Lincecum looks to up scoreless streak in Denver

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Lincecum looks to up scoreless streak in Denver

May 15, 2011GIANTS (22-17) atROCKIES (20-18)
Coverage starts at 5 pm on CSN Bay Area
(AP) -- Tim Lincecum has looked dominant against Colorado of late. After rain postponed his originally scheduled start in the San Francisco Giants' last game, the Rockies are forced to deal with the two-time Cy Young Award winner once again.Riding a 17-inning scoreless streak overall, Lincecum tries for a third consecutive winning start against the Rockies at Coors Field in the opener of a two-game set Monday night.Lincecum (3-3, 2.11 ERA) has no problem taking the mound with an extra days' rest after Sunday's game at Wrigley Field was postponed."It doesn't really bother me," Lincecum said. "What's wrong with an extra day?"Likely nothing for the Giants ace, but possibly something for the struggling Rockies (20-18), who are 9-16 since winning 11 of their first 13."You can't think about who's pitching, you can't think if he's good or bad. Just play the game," Rockies outfielder Carlos Gonzalez said.The Rockies will do their best to do that versus Lincecum, who has allowed three runs, 10 hits and struck out 28 in 23 2-3 innings to win his last three starts against them. He's yielded two runs, five hits and fanned 19 in the last two at Coors. Lincecum took a no-hitter into the seventh inning before he allowed a run and struck out 10 in an 8-1 win at Colorado on April 18."He's special," said Rockies shortstop Troy Tulowitzki, 6 for 35 with eight strikeouts versus the San Francisco ace.The right-hander has a chance to extend an overall scoreless streak that dates to April 29 at Washington. He allowed four hits and struck out nine in eight innings but did not factor in the decision of a 1-0 win over Arizona on Tuesday.San Francisco (22-17) hopes Lincecum is again on his game as it tries to improve to 6-1 against the Rockies in 2011. The Giants swept a three-game home set with the Rockies from May 6-8, then swept Arizona to surpass Colorado atop the NL West.The Giants have won nine of 11 overall against the Rockies, and six of 10 at Coors, including two of three this season."If you are going to end up where we want to end up by season's end, and that's to win the division championship, you're going to have to take on all comers whenever they show up," said Colorado manager Jim Tracy, whose team is 6-10 in the division and 1 12 games behind the Giants.Gonzalez is expected to play after he was hit in the foot by a pitch in the eighth inning of Sunday's 8-2 loss to San Diego. After batting an NL-leading .336 last season, Gonzalez is hitting .234 in 2011. He's 3 for 21 against the Giants this season.Clayton Mortensen (0-0, 0.55) is scheduled to make his second start for the Rockies. His other start came at San Francisco on May 7 when he allowed two runs, four hits and walked four in six innings of a 3-2 loss.Freddy Sanchez, who had two hits against Mortensen, doubled and scored a run in San Francisco's 3-0, six-inning win over the Cubs on Saturday.The Giants have won nine of 11 despite averaging 3.3 runs during that stretch. They've overcome that lack of production by posting a 2.94 ERA in that span."You're going to have to throw the ball well to win ballgames if you're having a tough time scoring runs," manager Bruce Bochy said.

Sharks need to 'figure it out pretty soon' after another thrashing

Sharks need to 'figure it out pretty soon' after another thrashing

NASHVILLE – Apparently, one wake up call wasn’t good enough for the plummeting San Jose Sharks.
 
Just one day after suffering what was arguably their worst game under coach Pete DeBoer, Nashville put up a touchdown on the Sharks in a 7-2 win, giving San Jose its sixth straight defeat – all in regulation.
 
After getting outscored 13-3 the last two nights, including Friday’s 6-1 loss in Dallas, where do they go from here?
 
“In two years, last year and this year so far, we haven’t had one night like this almost. Now we have back-to-back nights,” Joe Pavelski said. “I think it’s just a reality check. A gut-check time.
 
“It’s on us as players. Bottom line is we haven’t put the effort in that we need to have right now, and it snowballed on us a little bit at times. I think we’ve got to take a deep breath and really take a look in the mirror, refocus a little bit and understand there’s hockey out there, but it’s not going to fix itself.”
 
What has to be fixed immediately is the defensive structure that has been so vital to the Sharks’ success in the Pete DeBoer era. Even when the club was going through stretches of struggling to score, as it was earlier in the season, it was still collecting points in the standings with its ability to limit the opposition’s scoring chances.
 
While the game against the Predators was actually a little better in that regard, believe it or not, it was still nowhere near the level it needs to be for the postseason. Marc-Edouard Vlasic’s absence was partly to blame for that, but the Brent Burns-Paul Martin pair has been a disaster lately. Both have a minus-nine rating during the six-game losing streak, and that number is indicative of how they’ve looked, too.
 
“We’re giving up some goals. It’s a combination of things,” DeBoer said. “Obviously it’s not good enough to win games, so we’ve got to figure it out. I don’t have an answer standing here for you, but I know our group. Every team I’ve ever coached has a tough part of the season. This is obviously ours. We’ll regroup, and figure it out.”
 
Burns, who admitted to a “bad read” on Nashville’s second goal when Roman Josi sped around him, said: “It’s a tough league when you’re not executing little things.”
 
The Sharks actually looked strong early, poised to put the Dallas disaster behind them. The first few shifts, they had the puck in the Nashville end.
 
But Tomas Hertl was outmuscled behind the net by Colin Wilson on Colton Sissons’ goal at 4:14, Burns got beat on the second, and the Sharks never recovered. Patrick Marleau’s second period power play goal offered life, but that was extinguished 24 seconds later when James Neal answered with a power play goal of his own. The Sharks never got closer than two goals after that.
 
“When things are going bad, those are the things that are happening,” Burns said of Neal’s response to Marleau’s marker. “So, you’ve just got work through it."
 
Will they be able to work through it with just seven games left in the regular season, though? That this cold spell is happening in late March doesn’t speak well to the Sharks’ chances in the postseason, which begins in just two-and-a-half weeks.
 
Burns said: “Right now we should be just tightening up everything. … We've got figure it out pretty soon.”

Sharks forward Haley could face supplemental discipline from NHL

Sharks forward Haley could face supplemental discipline from NHL

NASHVILLE – Sharks forward Micheal Haley could be in line for supplemental discipline from the league, after earning a match penalty in the third period of Saturday’s 7-2 loss in Nashville.
 
After absorbing a borderline hit from behind by Calle Jarnkrok, Haley tracked down the Predators forward and promptly delivered a left jab to Jarnkrok’s face at 12:56 of the final frame, with the Sharks trailing 5-2 at the time.
 
Naturally, there were differing opinions from the two head coaches on the play.
 
Pete DeBoer said: “When you run someone from behind in a game like that, you probably deserve to get a punch in the mouth.”
 
Predators coach Peter Laviolette told reporters: "It's an ugly play. This isn't the wild, wild west. I mean, Calle hit him. We took a penalty. If we start doing that, we're in trouble, so hopefully it gets looked at."
 
Any player who earns a match penalty "shall be automatically suspended from further competition until the commissioner has ruled on the issue,” according to league rules.
 
In 54 games this season, Haley has two goals and nine assists for 11 points. His 110 penalty minutes is fifth in the league.
 
Jarnkrok did not return after the punch, but told reporters after the game he felt “OK.”
 
"I feel pretty good," Jarnkrok said. "Obviously, I saw him coming. There were a couple other guys coming, too. I didn't really know what to do. He got in a good punch on me.”