SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - San Francisco pitcher Tim Lincecum did not have his smoothest outing of the season but still managed to improve his record to 5-0 after the Giants beat the Houston Astros 2-1 on Saturday.
The two-times reigning National League Cy Young Award winner struggled to find the strike zone and had five walks during his eight innings. However, his five strikeouts increased his National League leading total to 69.
"I didn't feel like I had a good rhythm," Lincecum told reporters. "I was fighting myself with some mechanics. It turned out alright though."
The victory was Lincecum's first since April 23 following three no-decisions in a row.
Lincecum walked speedy leadoff hitter Michael Bourn, who stole second base and then scored on a wild pitch to give the Astros a 1-0 lead in the first inning.
Astros starter Roy Oswalt dropped to 2-5 despite a strong performance, giving up six hits and striking out seven without issuing a walk in seven innings.
Brian Wilson came on in relief of Lincecum and was able to finally close out the game, getting Kazuo Matsui to pop up the 15th pitch of the at-bat with the bases loaded.
(Reporting by Mike Mouat in Windsor, Ontario; Editing by Peter Rutherford)