A daily accumulation of history and present as I follow the 2011 year through the baseball season and reflect on the glories and disappointments of the greatest game on Earth.

Monday, March 7, 2011

Tim Lincecum

To quote Wilco's "I'm Always in Love:"
Why I wonder is my heart full of holes.
And the feeling goes and my hair keeps growing
I guess I must be turning into Tim Lincecum because my hair feels positively - well, thick and there. I won't say I need a rubber band for my pony tail. I just have a thick mane of hair, but if I did have long hair - well, if I could handle it growing long - who am I kidding?
It's been a long time since I wanted longer hair, and at 39...
But, oh! to be young and cool again. Oh, to have a whole city falling in love with my youthful pitching that in 3 full seasons has dominiated hitters like they were WWF jobbers fighting against the name wrestlers on 1980s Saturday morning TV.
There are the 2 Cy Young awards. He's got 3 straight seasons of 15 or more wins for a team that doesn't really win that much (despite the World Series championship last year). He has 3 straight seasons of 200 strikeouts. Despite going downhill last year from July 19th on, he was still better than average for the whole year and super dominant prior to that.
And while it could be a lot of things that see the Freak coming back down to earth (age, a salary argument with his team that saw him make $9million instead of the inflated amount that his agent thought he was worth, the drug bust after the season, his opponents figuring him out, a hitch in his delivery), there is still the feeling of coming out strong and dominant for another season. He took down Cliff Lee in the game that mattered last year. He wasn't great in the first game of the World Series, but he was there and he kept his team in the game until they could kick Lee off the field and into the showers.
The Rangers were never the same, and frankly, that's what it's about when you're the team's number one pitcher. Seeing as there is another big game pitcher on the team (Matt Cain) and an up and coming pitcher (Madison Bumgarner) and another pitcher that has potential if he gets his emotions together (Jonathan Sanchez), there's a need to step up.
And that's important if you're the $100million+ number 5 pitcher who needs to get his act together so that he can finish up his overpaid contract in the city by the bay.
But Lincecum... there is so much potential and so much upside. What will 2011 hold? Will it be 2008 or 2010 when it comes to stats or are we looking at another year of the pitcher with a certain skinny guy making his name in the no runners on first base category?

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