Two scoreless innings, no arm fatigue and no lingering pain from a blister on his pitching hand were enough for San Francisco Giants pitcher Tim Lincecum to call Tuesday's outing a positive one.
The right-hander couldn't make it to three innings, however, allowing three runs on four hits in 2 1-3 innings in his first spring training start since Feb. 26. The Giants fell to the San Diego Padres 6-2.
Lincecum, a former two-time NL Cy Young Award winner who struggled to a 10-15 record last season, missed the past two weeks of spring training games with a blister on his right middle finger.
''No issues,'' he said after Tuesday's game.
Lincecum threw 43 pitches, two under the limit manager Bruce Bochy had set for him. He struck out three and walked one.
''Getting that time off and then going out there for another inning, being able to get up and down was probably the biggest issue,'' said Lincecum, who was tagged for three runs in 1 1-3 innings of work in his previous start. ''I had some changeups at times, but every pitch really could have been better. I'm pleased all around with the way things went besides the result.''
Alexi Amarista and Mark Kotsay had run-scoring hits in the third off Lincecum. Kotsay has 10 hits in 17 spring training at-bats for a .588 batting average.
''He's had a great spring. A lot of hard contact,'' Padres manager Bud Black said.
''Third inning kind of got away from me just rhythm-wise, but it's nothing that I can't go back to a little bit of tape and put a little bit more focus on and fix next time out,'' Lincecum said.
Padres starter Freddy Garcia, trying to win the fifth spot in the starting rotation, struck out six in four innings of work and allowed a run on three hits, including a solo home run from Giants pinch hitter Johnny Monell in the bottom of the third.
''The off-speed pitches down below the zone have good action. He's a tall guy that creates good angle,'' Black said of Garcia. ''Deceptive delivery and with his arm speed, can create great lack of timing for the hitter. When he gets that fastball command, it looks as though Freddy might be able to have all the weapons.''
Garcia had a 13.50 ERA entering the game and had given up three or more runs in his three previous spring training starts.
Jesus Guzman doubled in two Padres runs in the fifth and Everth Cabrera reached base three times, stole two bases and scored twice. Guzman's double should have been a single, but Giants left fielder Cole Gillespie fell down trying to field the ball and it got past him.
Former Giant Cody Ransom hit a solo home run in the sixth inning to make the score 6-1. The Giants also committed two errors in the game.
Giants third baseman Pablo Sandoval appeared in his first game since re-joining the Giants from Venezuela's World Baseball Classic team. Sandoval was 0 for 3 and grounded into a double play.
NOTES: Probable starting pitchers for the Giants this week include LHP Barry Zito on Wednesday against the Cincinnati Reds, in Goodyear, Ariz.; RHP Yusmeiro Petit Thursday against a World Baseball Classic opponent to be determined and RHP Matt Cain Friday against Texas. ... Japan's WBC team will work out at Scottsdale Stadium, spring training home of the Giants, on Wednesday afternoon. The Giants play Japan the following day. ... Buster Posey, normally the Giants' catcher, got his second start of spring training at first base. . The club will face The Netherlands' WBC team on Thursday, with LHP Eric Stults getting the start. ... OF Cameron Maybin is close to returning from soreness in his back and could play as soon as Thursday, Black said. ... Padres LHP Clayton Richard is scheduled to start Wednesday's game against the Los Angeles Angels. ... The announced crowd of 10,987 was the fifth spring training sellout this year for the Giants.