Lincecum 'working toward' making Thursday start

Lincecum 'working toward' making Thursday start
March 4, 2013, 8:45 am
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Tim Lincecum is 'working toward' making his second Cactus League start Thursday against the Cleveland Indians. (AP IMAGES)

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- Tim Lincecum, who was scratched from his scheduled Cactus League start on Saturday with a blister on his middle finger, is “working toward” making a return to the mound Thursday.

Ryan Vogelsong, making his final appearance before leaving the Giants to pitch for Team USA in the World Baseball Classic, and Matt Cain are scheduled to pitch Monday against the Chicago White Sox at Camelback Ranch. Tuesday’s starter, originally listed as TBD, will be Madison Bumgarner and the Giants will get their first full off day since the start of their Cactus League schedule on Wednesday.

A team official said that Lincecum was the scheduled starter for Thursday’s road game against the Cleveland Indians. Lincecum, speed walking out of the clubhouse to join his teammates for drills on the field at Scottsdale Stadium, wouldn’t confirm or deny that he would be ready in three days.

“I’m working toward that,” was all Lincecum offered.

Coming off the worst season of his career, the two-time Cy Young winner allowed three runs on four hits in 1.1 innings with no walks and one strikeout in his first and only spring start Feb. 26 against the Los Angeles Dodgers.

Last Saturday morning, Lincecum told reporters that he would not be able to pitch due to a blister along the nail of the middle finger on his pitching hand. Yusmeiro Petit filled in for him and delivered three shutout innings in the Giants’ 9-7 split squad win over the Cubs.

Lincecum has dealt with blisters dating back to spring training in 2009 and the 2010 postseason and is most affected by the issue when throwing his slider or curveball.

Here are the lineups for Monday’s contest against the White Sox:

San Francisco Giants

1. Gary Brown CF
2. Joaquin Arias 3B
3. Cole Gillespie LF
4. Brett Pill DH
5. Brandon Belt 1B
6. Hector Sanchez C
7. Juan Perez RF
8. Kensuke Tanaka SS
9. Brock Bond 2B
(Ryan Vogelsong SP)

Chicago White Sox

1. Blake Tekotte CF
2. Alexi Ramirez SS
3. Jeff Keppinger 3B
4. Adam Dunn 1B
5. Paul Konerko DH
6. Dayan Viciendo LF
7. Dewayne Wise RF
8. Tyler Flowers C
9. Gordon Beckham 2B
(John Danks SP)