How can Tim Lincecum recover?
A horrific combination of faulty mechanics, physical maladies and a timid approach plagued Big Time Timmy Jim. A shaky fastball in spring training paved the way for a mostly lost campaign.
Lincecum's dominance, on the surface, remained similar to the norms from his illustrious career. Of course, his notable velocity dip and the increase in base runners allowed say his K/9 was inflated. He nibbled for most of the year, so much of that was getting sticks to chase; his on-the-black tests were easier to pass, yet his reputation still induced many empty hacks.
Indeed, that ugly 4.35 control rate shows he hardly overpowered his enemies. He showed fleeting signs of late-season improvement but ran out of gas at times, as well. Imagine if he had to face a designated hitter every day.
Chris Haft, the Giants' MLB.com scribe, noted that sources from enemy organizations remarked about how slender Lincecum looked this past year - that's saying something for the typically rail-like tosser. Haft opined that Lincecum's leg drive might've been less powerful than in the past, which, along with his dollar-scooping contortions, can do just as much damage to his well-being as an injury can.
Lincecum has been prescribed an offseason conditioning regiment focusing on shoulder build-up and, perhaps more pertinently, weight gain to bolster his body. They hope a recharged vessel and a focused approach will produce sustained (if not vintage) giddy-up on his four-seamer and extra bite on his off-speed stuff. In turn, he'd pitch with classic authority.
Entering a contract year, the formerly long-locked 28-year-old will start off on the starting rubber, but that October brilliance in a mid-game mold lurks in the back of Bruce Bochy's brain. Luckily, these doubts, along with the closed-minded "last year's stats" axiom of your opponents, will lower the cost on the former Cy Young trophy holder.
Even at his worst, he still fanned an attractive amount of hitters. By translating his October output, he could wind up a steal at his clearance sticker even if he merely sniffs his track record.
If Bochy keeps the faith, would you pass up this potential as your mixed team's fourth SP?
About Tim Heaney
Tim's work has been featured by USA Today/Sports Weekly, among numerous outlets, and recognized as a finalist in the Fantasy Sports Writers Association awards. The Boston University alum, who competes in the prestigious LABR and Tout Wars, has won numerous industry leagues in both baseball and football.
He appears frequently, including every Sunday, on Sirius XM Fantasy Sports Radio, as well as every Wednesday on 1570 AM WNST in Baltimore.
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