The Tigers finally got on the board in the sixth inning, but it was just one run and Tim Lincecum came into the game to dissuade Detroit from getting any closer. After replacing Barry Zito with two outs and two Tigers aboard, Lincecum struck out Jhonny Peralta to end that mini-rally.
In the seventh, Lincecum struck out Avisail García and Alex Avila, then got pinch-hitter Quintin Barry on a grounder. And when Lincecum batted for himself in the bottom of the seventh, it seemed apparent that we'll see him again in the eighth. Which makes you wonder if Bruce Bochy hasn't already decided on a Game 5 plan: Get as many innings as possible out of Zito and his mid-80s fastball, then turn to Lincecum at the first (or second) sign of serious trouble.
In the bottom of the seventh, we saw Jose Valverde on the mound for the first time since the American League Division Series, when he got hurt so badly by the Athletics. But Valverde didn't do anything to assuage his manager's -- let alone Tiger fans' -- concerns, despite all the talk of a recent mechanical adjustment. After striking out Lincecum, who led off the inning, Valverde gave up consecutive line-drive hits to Ángel Pagán, Marco Scutaro, Pablo Sandoval (who did fail to hit his fourth straight home run) and Buster Posey.
Well, Scutaro's was more of a hard grounder and Posey's a limp liner over the second baseman. But Valverde wasn't fooling anybody and got yanked from the game and we probably won't see him again unless the Tigers are way behind. Joaquin Benoit replaced Valverde and struck out two straight Giants to end the frame. But Valverde had already given up two runs, and so heading into the eighth inning it's Giants 8, Tigers 1.