SAN FRANCISCO -- After a 7-3 loss to the Arizona Diamondbacks on Wednesday, Tim Lincecum blamed his seven-run outing on a mechanical bug that caused his arm angle to drop and his pitches to flatten out. It's an issue that Lincecum has dealt with before, one he can fix before his next start, he said.

Solving his Paul Goldschmidt Problem will be considerably more difficult.

The Diamondbacks' All-Star first baseman continued his hard-to-believe domination of Lincecum, hitting a three-run homer in the first inning and later driving in a run on a sacrifice fly. Goldschmidt is now 13 for 24 against Lincecum with seven homers and 16 RBIs.

If the Giants harbored any thoughts of staying away from Goldschmidt altogether, Lincecum made it a moot point with early wildness. He gave up a leadoff triple to Gerardo Parra and then walked Martin Prado. Did Lincecum even consider pitching around Goldschmidt and going after Eric Chavez with the bases loaded?

"No," he said quickly. "No."

Manager Bruce Bochy didn't entertain the thought, either. Before the game, Bochy said he felt Lincecum might be trying too hard not to make mistakes to Goldschmidt. Afterward, there was no shying away from the fact that he did anyway. Goldschmidt jumped on an elevated 1-1 fastball, hitting it into the right-field arcade section. It was just the 22nd time in AT&T Park history that a right-handed hitter homered to right field.


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"He's got to make better pitches on him -- it's pretty simple," Bochy said. "He got that ball (in the first inning) up."

Around the organization, they used to greet each other with, "Happy Lincecum Day" when the right-hander was at his best and taking the mound that night. If Goldschmidt had the same feeling when he woke up Wednesday, he wouldn't admit to it.

"You know, Lincecum's a very good pitcher," he said. "You just go up there and try to have a good at-bat and try to hit the ball hard, and fortunately I was able to get one there in the first inning. It really doesn't change -- try to have a good at-bat, try to keep it simple."

Lincecum never could Wednesday night as he fought his complicated mechanics. Goldschmidt came up with two runners on in the third and hit a sacrifice fly. A triple by Chavez scored another run, and Parra hit a two-run homer in the fourth. In his first home start since signing a two-year deal last October, Lincecum was charged with seven earned runs in four innings.

"He was off all night," Bochy said. "It was pretty evident. He just didn't have it."

Lincecum said he would go back to the drawing board to fix his arm angle and bring life back to his off-speed pitches. And what about the ongoing Goldschmidt issue?

"I think I have to work more on my strengths and not necessarily his weaknesses," Lincecum said. "I know he's got some holes here and there, but I need to mix up my pitch routines. Right now I'm just falling into backwards counts where it's pretty dangerous. He's going to be one that hurts you a little bit more than others."

That's a lesson Lincecum has learned far too many times.

  • The Giants have tabled extension talks with Pablo Sandoval, and Bochy said he spoke with the third baseman to make sure the situation doesn't become a distraction. Sandoval is hitting just .143, but Bochy likes his approach at the plate and to the contract negotiations.

    "He said his agents are handling this, and he's just going to come out and play," Bochy said. "Your hope is that it doesn't (become a distraction), but there are times when it does, so they have to understand it is part of the business of baseball. Both sides have to agree on something, and right now that's not happening."

  • Left-hander Jeremy Affeldt (sprained MCL) will make a rehab appearance with the San Jose Giants on Thursday and could be back on the active roster within a week, Bochy said.

    For more on the Giants, see Alex Pavlovic's Giants Extra blog at blogs.mercurynews.com/Giants. Follow him on Twitter at twitter.com/AlexPavlovic.

    THURSDAY'S GAME
    Arizona (Randall Delgado 0-1)
    at Giants (Ryan Vogelsong 0-0), 7:15 p.m. CSNBA

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