San Francisco Giants pitcher Tim Lincecum threw a no-hitter against the Padres for the second time in two years, allowing just one walk in a 4-0 win Thursday afternoon at AT&T Park.
The only baserunner Lincecum (6-5) allowed was a second-inning walk to Chase Headley. He retired the final 23 batters in an effort that took 113 pitches.
Lincecum is only the second pitcher in Major League history to throw two no-hitters against the same team (Cleveland’s Addie Joss tossed no-no's against the Chicago White Sox in 1908 and 1910).
Last year's no-hitter came on July 13 at Petco Park, a 9-0 Giants win. Lincecum wasn't nearly as sharp in that game, striking out 13 but walking four and hitting a batter while throwing 148 pitches.
Today he was in control the entire game, not really needing any great plays from his defense. He put down the Padres quietly in order in the ninth inning with a strikeout and a pair of weak groundouts.
Will Venable's grounder to second sealed the deal as Lincecum's teammates celebrated around him.
"He had great concentration, great focus," said Giants manager Bruce Bochy. "Rarely you say that, but it's the third inning and I said, 'Son of a gun, this guy is really, really locked in.' You see those great athletes, when they get in that zone, and he just looked like he was in that zone early in the ball game."
Lincecum finished with six strikeouts. As if that wasn't impressive enough, he had a pair of hits at the plate.
A two-time Cy Young Award winner, Lincecum has struggled this season. He came into the game with a 4.90 ERA, allowing opponents to hit .273 on the season. But against a Padres team that is dead last in baseball in runs scored, batting average and sluggin percentage, his effort was more than enough.
"I think his secondary stuff was outstanding," Padres manager Bud Black said. "We couldn't be patient enough on some pitches, but he threw a great game."
Padres starter Ian Kennedy (5-9) took the loss, allowing four runs on nine hits in 6 2/3 innings. Buster Posey's two-run double in the seventh inning broke the game open for the Giants. Kennedy struck out eight.
Despite the loss, the Padres still won two of three games against the first-place Giants. They have a day off before hosting the Arizona Diamondbacks this weekend.