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This will be of little interest to non-baseball fans ... always wanted to blog a game, so this is little experiment. Tonight's Giants game features a matchup of similar pitchers, rookie Giant Tim Lincecum and veteran Astro Roy Oswalt, both of whom are dominating little guys who slingshot the ball with ferocity and accuracy. Both have hard fastballs and big breaking balls. I think they each have a changeup and Oswalt has a sinker. So I'm going to try to blog the game and see what happens.

First inning, something like 8 pitches from Lincecum, every one located on the black. Mixing in a changeup (which we didn't see much of last time) with the hard fastball and a breaking ball that just drops in. Sweet play by Vizquel to end the inning.

Eery how similar Lincecum and Oswalt's motions are, Lincecum says he modeled himself on Oswalt, so it is odd that they face each other in back to back starts in the earlist stages of Lincecum's career.

I think that the umpires are squeezing the strike zone this year. Oswalt didn't get an inside fastball a moment ago. I like a big strike zone ... swing the bat, boyz.

Lincecum seems to be getting a few more of the borderline pitches, but they're so hard and perfectly placed that perhaps the ump is impressed. Back to back breaking balls on Pence, the first a swing through, the second a knee buckler. Sweet. And the breaking ball down gets an ugly swing-through to retire Pence and end the second inning.

Oswalt pitching to Bonds. Gets the first strike and then two balls ... that often happens to Bonds. It's as if pitchers get scared after they get a strike, and don't dare try it twice. Paint on the outside corner to get him on the 3-2 pitch. Same location that Lincecum has been getting.

3rd inning ... Lincecum still locating the fastball hard on the corners with late movement. No-hitting them through 3, but that has been done many many times.

Maybe Oswalt threw 5 pitches in the 3rd ... he's on the 3-inning no-hitter bandwagon too. My kinda game ... sweet pure pitching, strikeouts, lots of ground balls and great throws from 2nd, short, and 3rd. Is there anything more thrilling than a long hard throw from our Happy Pedro (Feliz) from 5 to 3 ... no sirree!

Just as I write that, a weak bouncer gets past Feliz at 3rd in the fourth because he was played off the line. and its'a double. Follow that up with a weird fair ball off the glove of rookie Freddie Lewis who gave up on it, let the run score, and sent Loretta to 3rd base. Bad luck down both lines. But the kid keeps pitchin through it ... hard fastball called strike followed by a breaking ball swing-through on tough guy Carlos Lee. But then he manages to poke an RBI single between the first and second basemen. Ouch. Two runs on a bunch of garbage, but that's how the game gets played.

Ooooo ... Carlos rolls to a stolen base on Lincecum not paying attention (rookie mistake), and then a looper to the outfield. Bruce "big head" Bochy comes out to talk the kid back to earth ... and he gets a double play off what looked like a changeup to Pence, big blond Giant-killer from last week, ending the damage at 2.

Oswalt against Winn with his 20-game hitting streak ... grounds out 3-1.

Oswalt has a weird waddle when he walks, like his butt muscles are too tight. When he throws, it is that same sling shot motion as Lincecum ... as if the little guy has to get the whole musculature into the throw in lieu of the muscle or the weight of the big boy pitchers. I like little guy pitchers ... and I like the big ones too ... I just plain root for pitching.

Freddie Lewis gets a hit to atone a little for that bonehead play in right ... hitting over 300 as a rookie. Hard double to right for Klesko off a location mistake up and in. After that screaming splash down home run last night, Klesko is dangerous. So they're walking Bonds to load 'em up with 1 out. The fans are hanging up another chicken ... I had one of those that my friend VV gave me, but damned if I know where it is.

Pitching Durham outside, 2-1. Now a low change up (or a sinker?) that looked like a strike to me. And on the 2nd or 3rd 3-2 pitch, a fly ball scores the run. 2-1.

Molina, hot at .300, but the slowest man in baseball is at the plate, 2 out, 1st and 3rd. Popped him up on what looks to me like a sinker, but what do I know. They never tell you what the final out pitch is.

Ausmus up against Lincecum. Ausmus is GQ beautiful ... as he flies out to center ... and I really admire the man because he stood up for Billy Bean when the latter came out of the closet after his playing career ended. Ballplayers are conservative about things like that, and Ausmus coulda just shut up .. but he stood up for his friend, and that's true blue.

In the fifth, Everett beats beat out a bunt. Oswalt bunts him to second. Strike out on 3-2 pitch with some kind of movement off the plate outside. Lincecum outa the innning. Still 2-1.

Bottom of the 5th starts with 1st pitch swinging Feliz getting a hit. Why does anybody throw Feliz a first pitch strike? He's still a free swinger, making some contact right now though. Love his work at 3rd base, but will he ever be a hitter? Vizquel works him to 3-2. Hit and run, out at 1st, Feliz to 2nd.

Lincecum at the plate, free swinging, ugly swing through on a breaking ball to strike out. Winn bounces out to end it ... looked like a breaking ball.

Gawd, I wish they would call the strike at the belt ... when that pitch gets hammered, it's outta here, and it is supposed to be a strike. Call it umps! Kype and Kruk, the crack SF announcers, are saying that Berkman is not a fan of SF ... who cares? Big acking curveball, called third strike ... take that SF basher! And Carlos Lee flies out to end the inning. Movin along fast.

Bottom of the 7th ... I just love pitchers with command, especially when they don't waste time between pitches. Get the ball, pick a spot, put it there. Low 94 mph fastball gets Lewis ... strike in my book. Swing the bat. The perpetually angry Klesko at the plate, and hits a double, bullet to right just like that. Looked like a pretty fat fastball. And they're gonna walk Bonda gain. Yeller-bellied cowards ;-} Play the game!

Durham fightin pitches off right and left ... great matchup of smart players playing the game. And then he puts it between the first and second basemen to score Klesko. Sweeet. Tied, Lincecum off the hook for now. Molina up, 1st and 2nd, 1 out. Mistake pitch outside, and Molina goes the other way for a single that loads em up.

Feliz at the plate, and this where wily rabbit Oswalt has the upper hand against a free swinger. Gets him at the knees for 0-1. Ooops, I was wrong ... Feliz pulls an inside pitch that leaked across the plate down the third base line, for 2 ribbies. Made him pay for the Bonds walk. 4-2. 2nd and 3rd, 1 out. Lincecum at the plate. Perfect time for his first base hit ... but great play by Lamb at third to snare the ball hard hit down the line and throw him out 5-3. We're in the lead, though.

Lincecum is cool ... got victimized by some bad luck, but stuck it out. Still throwing hard, and cool as a cucumber. Hard fastball followed by 78 mph curveball down the middle on Pence, then a ground ball 3-1. Sweet. 2 out. Still only 82 pitches! But he ends up walking Ausmus on some too tricky pitches that just plain missed up and out. Bullpen up. Ump missed the call on an 0-2 curveball that was totally a strike. Bummer. But he gets the ground ball at 2-2.

Winn up again, his 20-game hit streak ends with an ugly swing at an outside low change up 2-2.

Lewis gets a hit on a chopper that Everett oléd. Klesko hits a fastball between 1st and 2nd ... both teams are wearing that path out. Garner to the mound ... Bonds at the plate, 1st and 2nd, 1 out. They gotta pitch to him. 96 mile fastball on the hands, Bonds fouls it to the left. Curveball low, tough to take. 95 miles on the hands, Bonds swings and misses. 95 again, leaked over the plate and Bonds fouls it on a hard big swing. 85 miles missed low. 93 mph inside, Bonds pops it up down the first base line. Durham makes the last out of the inning.

Lincecum still there in he top of the 8th, still in command ... grounder, 6-3 from the sure handed 11-time gold glover Vizquel, sweetest shortstop in the land. Lincecum just plain beat, so far, his idol Oswalt. Fly out to Durham ... out of the 8th.

Bottom of the 8th, relieve in for Oswalt. In the meanwhile, the nausating prospect of Benitez in the ninth rears its ugly head. Gawd, can't we trade that bum. Were outta the 8th and it looks like Winn's streak is over ... unless Benitez blows it.

Benitez up ... hold yer breath ... Lincecum watching ... Berkman base hit ... his first in the series. Fans booing ... we all know what a bum Benitez is ... just plain stooopid, frankly. Lee smashes the ball to the deepest part of Death Valley (right center) ... a home run anywhere else in the world. 1 out. Hanging slider at the belt. Scott pops up to Vizquel. 2 out. Pence to hit ... he homered off Benitez off the foul pole in Houston last week. Playing him deep in the outfield. Hard slider for a strike. Hard slider up on the outside ... righties have a tough time hitting it out to right in our park. Chopper to third, Feliz just gets him with his stylish hard throw across the diamond.

Sweet. Giants win 4-2.

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