DENVER (AP) -- Garrett Atkins picked the right time to dash home -- barely.
Atkins slid across the plate in the ninth inning when Giants catcher Bengie Molina dropped the ball trying to make a swipe tag, giving the Colorado Rockies a 1-0 win Wednesday night over San Francisco.After staying put at third base on a shallow fly ball to center fielder Aaron Rowand, Atkins decided to take off when Yorvit Torrealba flied to left fielder Fred Lewis."We had the bases loaded," Atkins said. "We had to win it right there."Atkins was initially called out by plate umpire Fieldin Culbreth, but was ruled safe when the ump saw the ball on the ground."I didn't celebrate, but I thought we had him," Lewis said. "Then I saw the umpire call him out."Molina was charged with an error; Torrealba did not credit for a sacrifice fly."He had to do a sweep tag and you have to be quick," Giants manager Bruce Bochy said. "It isn't an easy play for a catcher."It was the fifth 1-0 game in Coors Field history and the first since Aug. 1, 2006. It was the longest scoreless stretch of scoreless innings in Coors Field history.Atkins drew a leadoff walk from Keiichi Yabu (2-3) and moved to third on Brad Hawpe's single. After Chris Iannetta walked to load the bases, Jack Taschner relieved and retired pinch-hitter Jeff Baker on a fly to Rowand.Atkins bluffed going but held up, and Rowand's throw was off-target."Obviously, in hindsight, I probably would have been safe because the throw was off line," Atkins said. "But if he makes a good throw it would have been close."Rockies manager Clint Hurdle said Atkins made the right decision on the play."The first out of the inning, you've got a Gold Glove center fielder out there," Hurdle said. "It might have been the only off-line throw I've seen him make all season. He throws the ball on line and we're doubled up at home."Torrealba followed with his fly. Molina had to reach up the first-base line to catch the ball, and it slipped out of his mitt as he hurried to make a tough play and tag Atkins."It was another mediocre fly right there and I was like, 'Let's give it a try this time,'" Atkins said.Brian Fuentes (1-2) pitched the ninth inning to get the win.Starting pitchers Ubaldo Jimenez and Tim Lincecum each went seven innings before leaving for pinch-hitters.Lincecum gave up six hits, struck out nine Rockies and walked three."He threw great" Bochy said of Lincecum. "He had to put zeros because their guy was throwing great. Two great young arms."Jimenez allowed four hits, struck out three and walked one."To leave a ballgame after seven innings 0-0, you've done everything you can do," Hurdle said.Jimenez, who is 1-6, has pitched two straight strong games without getting a decision."If the team wins, it's my win, too," Jimenez said. "I'm happy."The Giants put two runners on in the first inning, but Jimenez got Molina to pop out and Rowand to ground out.Lincecum struck out Ian Stewart to escape a second-and-third jam in the third and retired Omar Quintanilla on a grounder to leave the bases loaded in the fourth.
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