Monday, January 12, 2015

To Tim or Not to Tim (Re-Visited)

This post by Jon deserved more action, before it was sidetracked by irrelevant talk about the Hall-of-Fame, etc..

Look ... we all know how this is going to play out.  One year or another, Tim Lincecum will discover what has been ailing him & will turn it all around with another dominant season ... correction, several more dominant seasons.  Since, unless he does that in 2015, he will be on his way elsewhere to perform this miracle, I vote for 2015.

I have reason for optimism about this.  I believe that he has been working & studying hard in the off-season, because he has been embarrassed by his odd role in the 2012 Post-Season & his virtual disappearance in the 2014 Post-Season.  We all know that he is a proud & talented guy.  We also know that he loves the Giants & San Francisco & that they love him right back.

It's Tim in 2015 - that's what I predict.  15+ wins, 200+ IP, a big role in a big season!


Zo said...

I'm sorry, but I have to believe that assuming Tim will be a star again is wishful thinking. Don't get me wrong, I wish that too, but pitching is not just hard work and pride and VSC and working with your dad and grit. It is a little bit of magic and no one knows that better than Tim. The difference between fantastic success and failure is so slight that it is hard to measure except by the results (hits, era, stuff like that).

Everyone seems fairly complacent, but I just don't feel that way. Hudson is not going to start the season. Cain is returning from injury. Madison threw a lot (as I stated before, the least of my worries). Tim has not been the Tim we want him to be for three years. Yusmeiro has no record of being a starter for a full season. Peavy should be good to go, but then again, he sucked before he came to the Giants (maybe he is just an NL-type pitcher). The Giants today are linked to Dillon Gee ( I would love for all these things to work out well, but we have so many spots that are unknown until we get these guys on the field and see how it goes. The point is that the Giants may not have enough starters to field a competitive team. Then again, they may, but that depends on a number of things all breaking right.

And I'm not sold on the hitting either. I love Joe Panik, and hope McGehee works out well, but I am skeptical that we have enough hitting without Pablo and Morse.

obsessivegiantscompulsive said...

Assuming Tim will be a star is wishful thinking. Thinking he could be a star is not, in my view.

Lincecum still has the magic. If he didn't, he wouldn't have been striking out so many hitters from 2012-2014 even while he was struggling.

He's also had a lot of success, for example, his 3.65 ERA at the time of his save, roughly four months into the season.

His problem hasn't been success but when he's having problems, he's like a batting practice pitcher.

That's shown by how well PQS has him, by that measure he's still a good pitcher per DOM% but very poor one by DIS%. To return to overall success, he needs to reduce the disaster starts by a lot, at least halving them.

That's where his dad comes in. Tim has clearly had issues trying to figure out his proper form for throwing success. His dad has it locked up in his head, he can tell by how the radio announcer talks about his son's pitching to know what he's doing wrong. Then it's a matter of sonny boy implementing his dad's fix.

Tim has had extended periods of dominance: second half 2012 and 2013, first four months of 2014. Then he would crash and burn. Hopefully his dad can help minimize them.

In any case, he's our 5th starter, perfect spot to take a chance on catching lightening in a bottle, most teams have lousy 5th starters, Tim can keep up with that.

M.C. O'Connor said...

I expect Tim to pitch well and contribute positively. I mean, he's still The Freak. He'll never be Cy Lincecum again, but he doesn't have to be. Much like Peavy--he has a CYA on his shelf. He's still a good pitcher, just not league-best. He doesn't have to be.

I think the Giants can expect improved production from a healthy Belt and Pagan to help offset Morse and Sandoval.

Travis Blackley is back. Lefties, man. Get lots of 'em. Blackley did OK in Oakland in 2012, he could be a useful emergency piece.

Ron said...

A note about Pagan:

I have been keeping track of the Puerto Rican Winter League, both by watching games on Latin American Sports Channel & checking the stats, &, while he is listed on the Senadores de San Juan roster, Pagan has yet to play. This surprises me & makes me worried that he is not ready yet.

So, I'm not ready to rely on the fact that we have a healthy Belt & Pagan back to cover for the loss of Sandoval & Morse.

I still look for the Giants to make some kind of move to add to the offense. Whether they also go get a Pitcher is questionable, but I'd like to see that, too. They certainly have the $ in hand.

M.C. O'Connor said...

Pagan wasn't at the Parade, either, which was odd. Cain was there, for example. Haven't heard anything about his rehab or whatnot. I'd sure like to see him back and get a full season out of him.

Ron said...

Amid all of the concern about our lineup, starting pitching, & health, another item is unresolved:

Who, exactly, is our Closer going into 2015?

Casilla sort of, kind of is, but Bochy gradually lost faith in him as we got deeper into the playoffs.

Romo could get another chance to take that role back.

I have no desire to consider Strickland for that role.

I think that that is another current question mark.

Anonymous said...

He's still a good pitcher
I can't see it (despite the K/9, which are in decline). He gets hit often, and hard. It sucks, but a starting staff of 'good pitchers' like he's been the last 3 years would be the worst rotation in the league.

just not league-best
Sadly, one of the league's worst.

M.C. O'Connor said...

The Giants have two closers, as you say. That's a plus, not a minus. I've never imagined Strickland as the closer. Neither Romo nor Casilla were closers on their first go-round, but after some time and experience they reached that level. Strickland has stuff, he just needs more ML reps before we can see his ceiling. Remember, he was facing some very high-quality opposition in the highest pressure situations after only nine appearances (7 IP, 25 BF) in the bigs. His struggles ought to be laid at Boch's feet, really. The skipper asked a lot out of an untried rookie. Not that I blame him--Strickland has that "strikeout" stuff (and Machi had his struggles right at the end). Despite the epic long balls the rook did manage to make some positive contributions in the post-season. I'm eager to see what he can do over a full season in the right role.

When Tim is bad he is very bad. But when he's not, he's a good pitcher. He can still throw lots of quality innings. It's just that the bad stretches are epically bad. It's like a hitter going 30 for 100 and then 0 for 50. I think that's fixable.

I like this club. Hell, they ought to have impressed us last October, not made us fretful for 2015. I think the 40-man roster looks pretty solid. They'll mix and match and add some pieces and maybe make a key late-season pickup (like they always seem to do), but the guys they got are the guys they are going with. I'm OK with that.

nomisnala said...

I think Tim's release point is about a centimeter back further than it was when he was throwing much harder. I think that centimeter or half inch could be costing him several miles per hour. If he lets the ball go when it is a drop more toward the plate, he will pick up some of his lost MPH. He most likely will have slightly more control. Even if he cannot muster up the velocity, he must hone in on his control. Petit throws no harder than the messed up Timmy, but Petit has almost pin point control, and Timmy does not.