On Monday, Surkamp (1-2) did just that as he surrendered one run on two hits while striking out 10 in six innings to earn his first Double-A victory in Richmond's 6-2 win over New Britain.
The 23-year-old left-hander had pitched well enough in at least two of his first four starts with the Flying Squirrels, but hard luck and a lack of run support left him without a victory through the month of April.
Surkamp -- selected by the Giants in the sixth round of the 2008 Draft -- hopes the new month also indicates a change in fortune.
"I honestly try not to worry about my record," Surkamp said. "There is only so much that you can control, and the wins will come if you pitch well enough."
He struck out 10 batters in his Eastern League debut April 8 against New Britain, but couldn't pick up a decision for his four scoreless innings.
In his last outing April 27 against Trenton, he scattered six hits and fanned 10 batters again, but still couldn't get into the win column.
The fifth time was the charm.
The Ohio native retired the side in order in the first inning and, with the exception of a pair of two-out singles in the second, Surkamp felt like he was cruising.
He was perfect in the third and fourth, and he worked around a leadoff walk in the fifth after Richmond plated four runs for a 5-1 lead. Surkamp hit a batter with two outs in the sixth before striking out Evan Bigley to complete his night.
"I was mixing my pitches and throwing everything for strikes," he said. "My curveball was getting most of my strikeouts early on, and then I was able to attack the hitters up in the zone with my fastball later because I had established my offspeed stuff."
The biggest difference, Surkamp believes, was being on the same page as his catcher, Johnny Monell.
The teammates have progressed through the Giants organization at almost an identical pace, forming the main battery in Augusta in 2009, San Jose in 2010 and now Richmond.
"I haven't had to shake off my catcher too much," the North Carolina product said. "He has caught me the last two years, so he knows how I pitch and we work really well together.
"I just throw whatever he throws done because we are always on the same page. Sometimes I think I have an idea what he is going to call even before he does."
Surkamp holds the Eastern League lead in strikeouts with 41. Only Asheville's Edwar Cabrera (44) and Myrtle Beach's Shelby Miller (42) have more in the Minors.
Justin Christian and former 13th-rounder Juan Perez each went 3-for-4 for Richmond in the victory.
Deolis Guerra (2-3) took the loss for New Britain, surrendering five runs -- three earned -- on seven hits over five innings.