Rookie Sparkles As Giants Rout Diamond Backs

Monday, July 2nd 2007, 7:26 am

By: News On 6

Barry Bonds is headed back to the All-Star game. If Tim Lincecum keeps this up, it won't be long before the rookie right-hander is there, too. Lincecum struck out a career-high 12 batters and got a key hit _ and rare praise _ from Bonds as the San Francisco Giants beat the Arizona Diamondbacks 13-0 on Sunday.

``It's something that's expected. He has the talent. He has the ability,'' Bonds said of his 23-year-old teammate. ``We told him, 'It's not how hard you throw it, it's where you throw it.' Today, he located great.''

Lincecum's strikeouts were the fourth-highest total by a San Francisco rookie. He pitched seven innings before Steve Kline and Randy Messenger finished the five-hit shutout, the sixth of the year for San Francisco.

``We needed it. I feel like I needed it,'' said Lincecum, who ended a frustrating six-start winless stretch. ``It's just something great for us to feed off.''

Bengie Molina added a three-run homer and Ryan Klesko drove in four runs for San Francisco.

Micah Owings (5-3) lasted only four innings, allowing seven earned runs and eight hits.

In other NL games, it was St. Louis 11, Cincinnati 7; Washington 3, Pittsburgh 2; Philadelphia 5, the New York Mets 3; the Chicago Cubs 5, Milwaukee 1; Houston 12, Colorado 0; the Los Angeles Dodgers 5, San Diego 0; and Florida 6, Atlanta 5 in 10 innings.

In other news, the Reds fired manager Jerry Narron after falling to 31-51, the worst record in the majors.

Bonds had already stepped into the batter's box twice when he finally got an actual at-bat in the fifth; Arizona didn't dare walk him with the bases loaded.

For the second straight day, Bonds took advantage with a double, driving in two runs. He also walked twice and grounded out after learning before the game he'd earned his 14th All-Star nod for the game in his home ballpark July 10.

``I'm at a loss for words right now,'' Bonds said. ``It just means more 'cause I'm at home. This is my town. This is my house. You can't say enough about being at home. It's great. This is the one I'll remember all time. This is the one I'll remember forever.''

Lincecum (3-2), nicknamed ``Franchise'' by his teammates, earned his first win since May 22 against Houston. The hard-throwing right-hander, the Giants' top pick at 10th overall last year out of Washington, didn't walk a batter for the first time.

Lincecum struck out the side in order in the fourth, walking off the mound to a roaring ovation. Those three Ks gave the rookie nine already, after he had two in each of the first three innings.

``It's hard to pitch better than that,'' San Francisco manager Bruce Bochy said.

Cardinals 11, Reds 7

At Cincinnati, Ryan Ludwick hit a solo shot off Homer Bailey (2-2) and a three-run homer off Ricky Stone to help make a winner of reliever Troy Percival (2-0), who pitched out of a threat in the fourth for his second win of the series.

Hours later, the Reds fired Jerry Narron and picked advance scout Pete Mackanin to be interim manager.

Nationals 3, Pirates 2

At Pittsburgh, Jesus Flores' homer off Paul Maholm (4-11) gave Washington a three-run lead in the seventh, and Chad Cordero pitched the ninth for his 14th save.

Mike Bacsik (2-5) won for the first time since May 24, shutting out the Pirates on three hits until being pulled during a two-run Pittsburgh seventh.

Phillies 5, Mets 3

At Philadelphia, Jimmy Rollins hit a two-run homer, Kyle Kendrick (3-0) pitched into the seventh and the Phillies salvaged the finale of a four-game series.

Rollins provided the big hit off starter Mike Pelfrey (0-6) in the third inning. Antonio Alfonseca got the final out for his sixth save in seven chances.

Cubs 5, Brewers 1

At Chicago, Jason Marquis (6-4) allowed four hits in seven innings to win for the first time since May 9, and the Cubs won for the eighth time in nine games.

Dave Bush (6-7) lasted six innings, allowing four runs and six hits.

Astros 12, Rockies 0

At Houston, Lance Berkman homered and had four RBIs, and Wandy Rodriguez (5-7) won for just the third time in eight starts.

Berkman's two-run homer off Tom Martin in the sixth was his first of the season batting right-handed. He also had a two-run double batting left-handed against Rodrigo Lopez (4-2).

Dodgers 5, Padres 0

At Los Angeles, Matt Kemp and Rafael Furcal homered to help Chad Billingsley (5-0) win for the first time as a starter this season. The right-hander's four other wins came in relief.

Justin Germano (5-2) gave up three runs and eight hits in 6 2-3 innings.

Marlins 6, Braves 5, 10 innings

At Miami, Josh Willingham had a career-best five hits, including a game-ending single in the 10th inning to make a winner of reliever Lee Gardner (2-2).

Miguel Cabrera singled to start the 10th and advanced when Rafael Soriano (2-1) threw wildly to second for an error. Brett Carroll then ran for Cabrera and scored when Willingham lined Soriano's 1-0 pitch down the left-field line.

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