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A's topple Lincecum, Giants 6-2 in series finale

Associated Press Published: May 20, 2012

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Tim Lincecum's shaky starts are getting more painful each time out.

Lincecum lasted only four innings and injured his left thumb in a home plate collision with Collin Cowgill, and the San Francisco Giants lost at home to the Oakland Athletics for the first time in four years Sunday, 6-2.

"It rattled me a little bit, just the collision, nothing else," Lincecum said.

Cowgill capped a four-run fourth with a collision that put a scare into San Francisco and its struggling, shaggy-haired ace. Generously listed at 5-foot-11 and 175 pounds, Lincecum tried to block the plate after a wild pitch, taking a helmet to the face and falling backward when Cowgill slid into him headfirst to score from second.

Lincecum (2-4) gave up five hits and four runs in four innings to push his ERA to 6.04. He hasn't won since April 28 at San Diego.

"Every time he goes out there I think, here we go, we'll have a normal game from Timmy," Giants manager Bruce Bochy said.

It hasn't really happened yet.

Josh Reddick hit his 11th home run to back Bartolo Colon (4-4) and give Oakland its first regular-season win in San Francisco since 2008. San Francisco had won 11 straight at AT&T Park against its Bay Area rival.

"Hallelujah," A's manager Bob Melvin said. "I was only here for two of it and I was already tired of hearing about it."

Colon struck out seven and walked two in five innings. He allowed two runs and six hits and wiggled out of a bases-loaded jam in the fifth with a pair of strikeouts.

Four relievers kept San Francisco scoreless over the final four innings, including Ryan Cook, who pitched the eighth to extend his scoreless streak to 20 2-3 innings to start the season.

San Francisco's feel-good weekend fizzled in the finale.

Angel Pagan doubled leading off the second to extend his hitting streak to 11 games. Pagan, who has a hit in 31 of his last 32 games, scored on Joaquin Arias' sacrifice fly to put the Giants ahead.

After Brandon Crawford walked in the third, Melky Cabrera singled for the first of his four hits. Buster Posey's sacrifice fly extended San Francisco's lead to 2-0.

"You really had to fight that feeling of, here we go again," Melvin said.

Instead, Lincecum's latest outing started strong but unraveled fast.

After five strikeouts in the first three innings, he walked Daric Barton to load the bases with one out in the fourth. Kurt Suzuki followed with an RBI single and Cowgill's two-run single gave Oakland its first lead of the series, 3-2.

"I'm just missing location, not executing my pitches. The walk didn't help but there was some unlucky stuff here and there," Lincecum said.

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