After years of an ERA around or below the 3.00 mark, Tim Lincecum really dropped off the map last year for the San Francisco Giants. Suddenly their best pitcher who had two Cy-Young Awards under his belt wasn’t even the best pitcher on the team, much less in the big leagues. This season that trend continued as his ERA remains above 4.00 but there are good signs that Lincecum is coming out of the couple of season-long funk that he has been in.
We can say it all started with the no-hitter but that really isn’t true. That was the best moment and the moment we knew he had it all coming together. Before that outing he had already began giving up fewer runs and had only given up more than three once in the five starts prior. That trend continued after the no-hitter except for one terrible start against the Cincinnati Reds. Other than that anomaly, he has only given up 3 runs including the eight-inning one-hitter against the Milwaukee Brewers.
Lincecum was a franchise player in the making if there ever was one a couple of years ago. Last season it looked like Matt Cain was the new big guy but this year it has actually been nobody until now. Lincecum seems finally ready to put the slow spell behind him and regain his form of 2011 and before. That is something for the Giants to look forward to but also possibly dread. Considering the down years and this upswing, it will be difficult to decide what to do with his contract as he becomes a free agent after next season.