SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- Tim Lincecum threw 32 pitches in a simulated game this morning and said he felt no ill effects from the middle finger blister on his pitching hand.
"Didn't really feel it at all. It wasn't really affecting any of my pitches," Lincecum said. "Getting back to normal now."
Lincecum, who has been scratched from his last two spring starts because of the blister, threw all his pitches facing minor leaguers Nick Noonan, Gary Brown and Brock Bond in the simulated game. He is expected to return to the Giants' rotation Tuesday night against the Padres.
Lincecum had a 14-pitch first inning and 18-pitch second inning and got through seven at-bats. He left a couple fastballs up and said his slider bowed out into the right-handed batter's box at times but overall he was pleased with how he felt after the layoff.
"That work I did to stay on my back foot this offseason allowed me to kind of translate that into an easier mound session," he said. "The timing was good. Mechanically I feel good."
Lincecum said he's still treating his finger with lime juice and a "mystery mud" to help toughen up the skin. The blisters are a problem he has dealt with in past springs and he said it just takes a little while for calluses to form.
Missing time is frustrating, he acknowledged, "especially as stupid as this (blisters) can be. ... But to get back out there, and it's not going to be an issue from here on out -- at least I hope it's not -- makes me feel good."
Lincecum pitched out of the stretch to his final hitter. At times last year he abandoned his windup altogether and pitched exclusively out of the stretch, but said he's working to go back to more traditional use of the stretch this season.
-- Matt Kawahara