Sunday, August 17, 2008

Historic Tim

I make no claim to objectivity when it comes to Tim Lincecum. However, each time he takes the mound, I admit that part of me gets ready for the inevitable letdown. (I do this to prepare myself...after all he is a Giants pitcher and I am under 50 (barely!) so I really don't know what a superstar pitcher looks or behaves like.) I figure it to be a short, uncharacteristic outing...probably features poor control and a long ball to a formidable opponent. I have "pre-written" this post several times ("Human Tim") and it always surprises me how close to the surface it is.

Then Tim takes the mound and about two hours later, I have to come up with another positive title! Damn, this is a great problem to have. Today's performance featured 7.2 innings of three hit ball. He should have got away without an earned run but Taschner let one in. Ten strikeouts to regain the MLB lead. I find Tim's individual (and relatively unimportant) statistics exciting in a totally petty way. (I'm OK with that.) With every outing it becomes clear that Lincecum is not just having a great season, he is having an historically great season and early career. Try these facts out:

  1. 13-3 is the second best start in SF history (5 occurences). Only a couple hacks named Perry and Marichal were better at 14-2. I venture to guess they had better teams playing behind them, ya think?
  2. With his sixth double digit strikeout game this year (8 in his career), he ties Marichal (1966) for number 4 on this all time list. Only Schmidt (9 in 2004), Sadecki (8 in 1968), and Montefusco (7 in 1975) are above him. With at least five or so starts left, Tim has a good shot at taking over the lead of that list.
  3. The Enchanter has limited opponents to 3 or fewer runs in 40 of his 49 career starts, including 21 of 25 this year. The Giants are 26-14 in those forty games. Tim is 17-0 (29 starts) when the Giants score at least three runs for him.

It really is an honor to see this happening before our adoring eyes. I want to grow old(er) watching Mr. Lincecum fashion his own path to glory. It is off to a great start.

(Latest paranoia: Tim and Daddy are planning on jumping ship ASAP, probably get the biggest contract ever from the YankSox, which is why there is no new contract. Please tell me I'm wrong.....)


M.C. O'Connor said...

It does seem that all the great talents eventually wind up somewhere else. Bonds. Maddux. Clemens. Once they are on the so-called "open" market, only a handful of teams can join the bidding war. The Giants have added Zito to the mortgage, which makes it unlikely any other pitcher would get that kind of contract. Even Tim, sad to say. But that is for another time. Tim is ours. Let us marvel in that.

Brother Bob said...

He started shaky- his control wasn't there, and I thought, "Shit his knee must be really sore." But he gets himself out of trouble so well. Here's a great line from this morning's paper:"After Yunel Escobar hit a leadoff double in the 6th, Lincecum needed just 3 pitches to dust Chipper Jones, making the NL's leading hitter look like a September call-up while he failed to check his swing on a breaking ball."
Did you notice he pitched exclusively from the stretch from the 6th on? "Less moving parts," he said.
BTW I would be remiss if I didn't state that "Travis Ishikawa" is my favorite name right now. It doesn't have any Zs in it, but it FEELS like it does.

Zo said...

This is a fear of mine as well, I think I expressed it when Zito was signed. If Zito gets (note: not deserves) $126 million, what should Tim get? $300 million? More? One positive thought: The Giants suck now but are re-building with young players. When Tim gets around to free agency, the Bankees and Botox are not going to be young, hell, they aren't now. Tim might opt to grow into a career with a bunch of guys with their best in front of them, not behind them. Another positive: Wilson. If he can continue (arguably now the top NL closer) and the relief corps improve, Tim may figure that he has as good a chance to chalk up wins here as anywhere else. Telling comment: Yesterday's win was Tim's 20th. In the Chomic today, his statement was purportedly, "Too bad they couldn't be in one year." Downside: Tim will not win a Cy Young award this year regardless of what he does, because the Giants are not a good enough team and not on the east coast. Irrelevant, you say? No, you mean illogical, but that's life when hack writers are doing the voting.

Brother Bob said...

Hey Bro! You got excerpted on BCB! Doesn't he have to pay you something for that?

Zo said...

By the way, as I type this, Zito is through 6, 4 hits, 0 runs, 1 walk. Giants up 4-0.

JC Parsons said...

Hey Bro, thanks for pointing that out. I probably would have seen it but I have gotten really busy now that I'm back at work. (I know, boo hoo, my 10 week annual vacation is over and I must return to my very well paying, yet simple job.) I am honored that Chris @ BayCityBall would use any of my work, lord knows I refer to his data all the time. Never any charge to friends of the Giants. Besides, our unofficial motto here at RMC is...
"This shit's free, we're giving it away!"