SAN FRANCISCO (AP) - Tim Lincecum will return to the mound Monday for San Francisco after the Giants ace missed his last start with spasms and inflammation in his lower back.
Lincecum will pitch the opener of a key home series against the Colorado Rockies, who lead the Giants by 4½ games in the NL wild-card race.
The reigning NL Cy Young Award winner tested his back by playing catch Friday, then threw a bullpen session Saturday. He said Sunday he felt fine and wasn't in any pain.
Lincecum will enter his start as the new NL ERA leader at 2.34 after St. Louis' Chris Carpenter gave up seven earned runs in six innings against Atlanta in a 9-2 loss by the Cardinals on Sunday.
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