(SportsNetwork.com) - Few things have been more surprising the last few years than the demise of two-time National League Cy Young Award winner Tim Lincecum.
Lincecum gets a fresh start on Thursday when the San Francisco Giants conclude a four-game series with the Arizona Diamondbacks at Chase Field.
After going 69-41 with a 2.98 ERA and 1,127 strikeouts from 2007-11, Lincecum has posted a 20-29 record with a 4.76 earned run average and 383 strikeouts in 65 starts in 2012-13.
Last year the 29-year-old righty was 10-14 with a 4.37 ERA in 32 starts.
The Giants could have turned the page on him this offseason, but opted to bring him back for two more years at $35 million.
Arizona, meanwhile, will unveil one its big offseason acquisitions on Thursday, as righty Bronson Arroyo makes his desert debut after signing a two- year, $23.5 million contract this winter.
Arroyo, who turns 37 years old later this month, spent the past eight years with Cincinnati. He finished last season with a 14-12 record and 3.79 earned run average over 32 starts for the Reds.
The veteran hurler has made at least 30 starts in nine straight seasons, tied for the second-longest active streak in baseball with Dan Haren, and tossed 200 innings or more for the eighth time during that span (199 IP in 2011).
Since 2005, Arroyo ranks among the major league leaders in starts (T-1st, 297), quality starts (3rd, 183), innings pitched (3rd, 1,895 2/3) and wins (6th, 119).
San Francisco gained the upper hand in this series on Wednesday, as Tim Hudson tossed 7 2/3 scoreless innings and Giants blanked Arizona, 2-0. Angel Pagan went 2-for-4 with an RBI and Michael Morse stroked an RBI double for the Giants, who have taken two of the first three games of this season-opening set.
Hudson (1-0) allowed just three hits and fanned seven without issuing a walk in his Giants debut. Hudson, 38, signed a two-year, $23 million contract with San Francisco in the off season.
"I did make some bad pitches during the game, but the guys made some good plays behind me and that's what you need to pitch a good game," said Hudson.
Sergio Romo work a perfect ninth inning for his second save of the season.
Gerardo Parra went 2-for-4 with a double and Paul Goldschmidt also stroked a two-bagger for the Diamondbacks, who had just four base runners all game.
"He didn't give us anything to hit. You just have to tip your cap to him (Hudson), we couldn't manufacture any runs tonight," Arizona second baseman Aaron Hill said.
Goldschmidt has now hit safely in 24 straight games, matching Tony Womack's binge in 2000 for the second longest in franchise history. Luis Gonzalez's 30- game streak in 1999 remains the D'backs' record.
Trevor Cahill (0-1) was pegged with the loss after allowing both run on four hits and three walks over six frame.
The Diamondbacks were 7-12 versus the Giants last season.