ST. LOUIS -- Lance Lynn's worst fastball of the night was the one he fired toward second base.

The right-hander rushed a throw after fielding Hunter Pence's ground ball in the fourth inning. The error helped the Giants break the game open with four unearned runs in a 5-0 victory in Friday's Game 5 of the National League Championship Series.

"It was just another bad inning,'' Lynn said. "This is the time of year when it can pile up on you if you give them an extra out. And I gave them an extra out tonight."

With Marco Scutaro on first and Pablo Sandoval on second, Lynn coaxed Pence into hitting a bounding ball back to the mound. Lynn could have flipped to first for an easy out.

But Lynn said he never considered anything but trying to get the double play.

"One-hundred percent that's the right play,'' he said.

Lynn said he "short-armed" his delivery, which is why the ball sailed wide of shortstop Pete Kozma and struck the second-base bag. Kozma said he was late covering the base, but a stern-faced Lynn took the rap.

"I turned around and threw the ball into center field when I could have gotten myself out of the inning,'' he said. "It's definitely my fault.

Scutaro scored, Sandoval moved to third and Pence wound up at first. By the end of the inning, the Giants led 4-0.


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"I don't mind him being aggressive if he's got the play,'' Cardinals manager Mike Matheny said. "Kozma was in the right place. He just made a low throw. And to do it over again, I'm sure he'd like to take the easy way out and try his luck with (Brandon) Belt."