SF Giants beat Mets in first game of double-header 

click to enlarge Tim Lincecum #55 of the San Francisco Giants pitches against the New York Mets at Citi Field on April 23, 2012 in the Flushing neighborhood of the Queens borough of New York City. - PHOTO BY JIM MCISAAC/GETTY IMAGES
  • Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images
  • Tim Lincecum #55 of the San Francisco Giants pitches against the New York Mets at Citi Field on April 23, 2012 in the Flushing neighborhood of the Queens borough of New York City.

He wasn't quite up to his old Cy Young standards, but San Francisco Giants righty Tim Lincecum took a step forward Monday.

The two-time Cy Young Award winner helped the Giants beat the New York Mets 6-1 in Game 1 of the teams' doubleheader Monday night.

Buster Posey and Nate Schierholtz homered for the Giants, who have won four of their last five.

Schierholtz also singled and tripled, falling just a double shy of the cycle.

Spot starter Miguel Batista took the loss for the Mets, who have lost four of their last five.

Batista allowed six runs (three earned) on seven hits in 3 2/3 innings for the Mets, who managed just seven hits against Lincecum and three relievers.

Four Mets relievers held the Giants scoreless the rest of the way, with Jeremy Hefner pitching three shutout innings in his major-league debut.

Pablo Sandoval extended his hitting streak to 15 games, moving him within one of Willie Mays' San Francisco Giants record to start a season.

After struggling in his first three starts of the season, Lincecum came out with his best performance of the year, but also got some key help from his teammates.

Lincecum, who entered Monday with an 0-2 record and 10.54 ERA, pitched five innings of one-run ball, scattering four hits, but also walking five while striking out eight.

Along with some early offensive support, thanks to Posey and Schierholtz, Lincecum was bailed out in the bottom of the fifth by a spectacular defensive play.

With the bases loaded and one out, Mets first baseman Ike Davis grounded a ball up the middle. Second baseman Emmanuel Burriss ranged to his right to snare it, then flipped the ball to shortstop Brandon Crawford using his glove.

The throw was slightly high, but Crawford reeled it in with his bare hand before throwing back to first, almost in one motion, to complete the inning-ending double play.

The Giants added to their 2-1 lead on a three-run homer by Schierholtz off Batista in the third inning, and an RBI double by Crawford in the fourth.

Posey gave the Giants a 2-0 lead with his solo homer in the first inning, following Sandoval's RBI single and Melky Cabrera's walk.

The Mets scored their one run off Lincecum on an RBI double by Mike Baxter in the second.

NOTES: Mets INF Ronny Cedeno (left intercoastal strain) was put on the 15-day DL before the game. RHP Jeremy Hefner was called up from Class AAA Buffalo to replace him for Monday's doubleheader, giving the Mets pitching depth. INF Jordany Valdespin was also brought in from the Mets' Class AAA affiliate and was expected to be activated Tuesday, with Hefner likely to return to Buffalo. ... OF Andres Torres (strained left calf) and RHP D.J. Carrasco (sprained right ankle) were scheduled to begin rehab assignments with Class A Port St. Lucie on Monday. ... 3B David Wright said it would be "a little odd seeing" former SS Jose Reyes return to Citi Field as a Miami Marlin on Tuesday. "It will be a little strange," he said of seeing his long-time teammate in a different uniform. "But all in all I'm excited." ... Giants 2B Freddy Sanchez (right shoulder dislocation) was scheduled to start a rehab assignment for Class A San Jose on Monday night. He was expected to DH Monday, then play the field later in the week. ... C Buster Posey was expected to play only in the first game of Monday's doubleheader and rest in the second.

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