Ben Margot/apSan Francisco Giants shortstop Brandon Crawford

Ben Margot/apSan Francisco Giants shortstop Brandon Crawford

Giants take a leap of faith on Lincecum

The Giants took a massive leap of faith in signing Tim Lincecum to a two-year, $35 million contract. In essence, they looked longer and more lovingly — and yes, quite hopefully — at his good, great and brilliant 2013 starts than the starts that extended the life of the “Is this guy really done?” line of questioning that started forming in 2012.

The Giants’ thinking, it can be assumed, went something like this:

The talent is still in there. The howling fastball might not be, but the rest of the devastating arsenal, the insane split changeup and the knee-buckling bender, remains at the Freak’s fingertips. And now that he’s been sufficiently humbled to the point of openness regarding making the stylistic adjustments — on the field and off — eventually required of virtually every pitcher who’s lived, there’s a very good chance that a very good Act II is in the offing.

And yes, there might have been a little of this kind of thinking going on, too:

Even if he bombs as a starter, he’s already shown he can dominate in short relief, and while we’re not going to go public with this thought, there’s more than a little consternation in the house in regards to Mr. Romo. That incessantly slider-torqued elbow ain’t gonna hold out forever, and if he goes down, we’re not so sure we can count on the Santiago Casilla-Jeremy Affeldt-Heath Hembree combo to carry us through. Not the worst thing in the world to have a former Cy Young winner in your hip pocket should a couple of worst-case scenarios play out.

The majority of the rest of baseball’s thinking, we quickly learned, went something like this:

Putting more stock in those flashes of brilliance than the overall picture presented by the past two seasons is taking the concept of hopeful to an extreme. It’d be one thing if Lincecum was lights-out from, say, August on. He wasn’t. And even elite closers don’t make that kind of money, no matter how may wigs they help sell. Terrible signing, period.

Here’s what the rest of baseball doesn’t know: Lincecum has the heart and pride of a lion. The character, too. Sure, he’s flashed immaturity as much as brilliance at times, but funny thing about immaturity: it usually morphs into maturity, and it clearly has with Timmy. That maturity meshed with the magic still inside should make every Giants fan willing to take that leap with the team.AT&T ParkMLBSan Francisco GiantsTim Lincecum

Just Posted

Dominion Voting Systems, a Denver-based vendor, is under contract to supply voting machines for elections in San Francisco. (Kevin N. Hume/Examiner file)
Is San Francisco’s elections director impeding voting machine progress?

Open source technology could break up existing monopoly

The 49ers take on the Packers in Week 3 of the NFL season, before heading into a tough stretch of divisional opponents. (Courtesy San Francisco 49ers)
‘Good for Ball’ or ‘Bad for Ball’ — A Niners analysis

By Mychael Urban Special to The Examiner What’s the first thing that… Continue reading

Health experts praised Salesforce for keeping its Dreamforce conference at Moscone Center outdoors and on a small scale. (Kevin N. Hume/The Examiner)
Happy birthday, Marc Benioff. Your company did the right thing

Salesforce kept Dreamforce small, which made all kinds of sense

Former San Francisco Mayor Willie Brown, pictured with Rose Pak in 2014, says the late Chinatown activist was “helping to guide the community away from the divisions, politically.”
Willie and Rose: How an alliance for the ages shaped SF

How the Mayor and Chinatown activist shaped San Francisco, then and now

The Grove in Golden Gate Park is maintained largely by those who remember San Francisco’s 20,000 AIDS victims.<ins> (Open Eye Pictures/New York Times)</ins>
Looking at COVID through the SF prism of AIDS

AIDS took 40 years to claim 700,000 lives. COVID surpassed that number in 21 months

Most Read