SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Chase Utley finally figured out that a little patience goes a long way when facing two-time Cy Young Award winner Tim Lincecum.
If only Utley had come up with the answer three years ago when Philadelphia was beaten by San Francisco in the playoffs.
Utley had three hits off Lincecum, including his team-leading seventh home run, and the Phillies went on to beat the Giants 6-2 Tuesday night.
“The last couple of nights we’ve had better at-bats, worked the count a little bit more, swung at our pitches in the strike zone and we got some hits to show for it,” Utley said following Philadelphia’s seventh victory in its last 10 games at San Francisco.
“I’ve swung at a lot of balls out of the strike zone in the past so I was just trying to get (Lincecum) in the strike zone. Tried to get a good pass on it and I was able to find a couple holes there,” he added.
Philadelphia has won two straight against the World Series champions since its own two-time Cy Young Award winner, Roy Halladay, went on the disabled list with a shoulder injury. Halladay met with a specialist in Southern California earlier in the day and was in the Phillies’ clubhouse after the game but did not talk to reporters.
Ryan Howard also homered and reached base four times while Kyle Kendrick pitched seven strong innings to win his third consecutive decision. The right-hander extended his scoreless streak on the road to 25 innings before giving up a sacrifice fly to Angel Pagan in the third.
“We’ve played two solid games,” Phillies manager Charlie Manuel said. “We were really working on moving the runners and scoring the runs. Everything was very good.”
One night after getting handcuffed by Cliff Lee and the Phillies’ bullpen, the Giants couldn’t get much going against Kendrick and two relievers.
Kendrick (4-1) yielded six hits and two runs, needing only 88 pitches to get through seven innings. He struck out six, walked none and allowed only two runners past second base. Kendrick worked out of a two-on, none-out jam in the fourth and retired 12 of his final 14 batters.
Mike Adams pitched a scoreless eighth and Jonathan Papelbon worked the ninth to complete the seven-hitter.
The Giants, coming off a three-game sweep of the Dodgers last weekend, are now on the verge of getting swept themselves.
“We just have to get those bats going,” manager Bruce Bochy said. “It makes it tough when you aren’t doing a lot offensively.”
Utley singled and scored in the first, drove in Ben Revere with a single in the second and then homered leading off the fifth. All his hits came off Lincecum (2-2). Before that, the Phillies’ second baseman was batting .167 against the right-hander.
“Anytime you get hits and find some holes it builds some confidence,” Utley said. “We’re definitely doing the little things now, which is big, especially against a team like this.”
Howard singled off Lincecum and hit his sixth homer of the season off reliever Jose Mijares with two outs in the ninth. The slugger also walked twice.
Lincecum had another shaky outing after giving up a career high-tying 10 hits in his previous start.
Utley hit a one-out line drive that ricocheted off Lincecum’s rear end in the first inning and went to second when the pitcher made an awkward throw that landed in right field for an error. After Michael Young walked, Howard singled to drive in Utley.
Laynce Nix singled leading off the second and scored on a groundout by Jimmy Rollins. Utley’s RBI single made it 3-0.
The Giants pulled to 3-2 in the third on Pagan’s sacrifice fly and an RBI double by Marco Scutaro.
San Francisco couldn’t get much going after that.
“(Kendrick) has got the ball moving in every direction,” Giants outfielder Hunter Pence said. “He had his location, his late movements and change of speeds. He did a great job.”
Utley’s home run put the Phillies up 4-2.
Young doubled home Rollins in the seventh.
NOTES: Kendrick has given up two earned runs or fewer in six of his seven starts this season. … The game was stopped briefly when plate umpire Mike DiMuro was hit in the facemask by a foul tip off the bat of Pablo Sandoval in the third. DiMuro was checked out by a Giants trainer and remained in the game. … San Francisco activated Mijares from the bereavement list before the game and optioned RHP Jean Machi to Triple-A Fresno. Mijares replaced Lincecum in the eighth. … RHP Jonathan Pettibone (2-0) pitches Wednesday for Philadelphia against LHP Barry Zito (3-1), who is unbeaten in four starts at home this season.