10/20/10 6:10 PM ET
Giants keeping tabs on former mate Molina
By Cash Kruth / MLB.com
Sparkplugs Rowand, Renteria back in lineup
SAN FRANCISCO -- The Giants stuck with the two veterans who sparked their Game 3 win against the Phillies, as skipper Bruce Bochy opted to once again start center fielder Aaron Rowand and shortstop Edgar Renteria in Game 4 of the National League Championship Series at AT&T Park on Wednesday.Renteria remained in the Giants' leadoff spot, while Rowand batted eighth. After juggling the middle of their lineup Tuesday against Phillies lefty Cole Hamels, they tweaked it again Wednesday against right-hander Joe Blanton, moving Aubrey Huff to the three-hole, Buster Posey down to the cleanup spot and Pat Burrell to the No. 5 hole. Cody Ross hit sixth, while Pablo Sandoval got the start at third base and batted seventh in place of Juan Uribe, who admitted to Bochy earlier in the day that he wasn't quite 100 percent. "It was evident [Tuesday] the wrist was bothering him," Bochy said of Uribe's left wrist, which he injured in Game 1. "I could tell with his swinging. I talked to him today, and he admitted it's still bothering him." Bochy also said he opted to keep Rowand in the lineup over regular Andres Torres, who is 3-for-26 in the postseason, including a groundout in a pinch-hit appearance Tuesday. Bochy said Torres' at-bat Tuesday was not a factor in his decision. "I just like the way Aaron's been swinging the bat, even though he hasn't been in the games, but watching him, and of course, yesterday getting a big double there," Bochy said. "Andres, I think it's fair to say he's going through some struggles right now at the plate, so I decided to stick with Aaron."
Lincecum grateful for SF fan support
SAN FRANCISCO -- Throughout the season as the Giants clawed their way to the National League West title, some fans and reporters noted the difference between this year's team and rosters of the past.While other recent great San Francisco teams were built around Barry Bonds and other sluggers, this squad was fashioned around a dominant pitching rotation, headlined by Tim Lincecum. Aside from Bonds and Lincecum being the marquee names on their respective teams, they also share a standing as the Bay Area's favorite player. Prior to Wednesday's Game 4 of the NL Championship Series, Lincecum spoke of how appreciative he is of how San Francisco has embraced him during his four years here. "This city has taken me in ... as one of their own," Lincecum said. "Even in my mistakes and my faults and things that I've said wrong or done wrong, they've accepted me and still rooted us on and rooted myself on. I can't say enough about the city. It's been great to me, the opportunities I've had here, the way people have embraced me. It's been great." Giants manager Bruce Bochy said it's easy to see why Giants fans are so enamored with Lincecum. "He's unique with his stature and how well he throws, and fans love to see a kid like this have success," Bochy said. "I enjoy watching him. I'm a baseball fan when he's out there. So no question, anytime you have an impact type player like Timmy or any great player, it does a lot for the fans to come out and watch."
Cash Kruth is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.