There was no on-field baseball action on Thursday for the Giants at AT&T Park, but there’s always business being done at this time of year. Giants General Manager Brian Sabean was on KNBR on Thursday and was questioned about the rumors of Tim Lincecum being moved out for other useful pieces. Sabean has temporarily put to rest some of those rumors with the quotes he put forth:
“I expect Timmy to be in a Giants uniform. I find it hard to believe that he’d pitch elsewhere this year.”
Lincecum certainly would be an interesting trade chip, being as great as a shut-down starter if he can put everything together to his floor being a useful long-man in the bullpen. You may have noticed his effectiveness has been better than before, striking out twenty-four batters in his last sixteen innings, and compiling thirty-two strikeouts in his last three starts. As such, Lincecum has been fabulous in July, posting a .238 wOBA and .160/.244/.288 slash line against for this month. Giants fans certainly hope this is a sign of things to come, but it is no doubt that if this pattern continues the decision in November becomes much more difficult when it comes to a qualifying offer – and a contract offer — for The Freak. That qualifying offer (was a one-year, $13.3MM contract offer in the last offseason) would require the non-Giants team that signs Lincecum to give up a Draft Pick in the 2014 Rule 4 Draft.
For a player that was raised by the farm system of San Francisco, collected Cy Youngs in San Francisco, and was a part of two World Championships in San Francisco, you would understand if there was some sort of emotional connection between not just the fans/team and the player, but the player and the team/fans. Timmy expressed his relief with Sabean’s interview:
“I’ve always had a great time here in San Francisco [and] I hope to see that go further.”
As much as some Giants fans may have hoped to snag a top prospect by trading Tim Lincecum, those plans will have to be put on hold. If the Giants hold their ground by the trade deadline, perhaps staying less than nine games back, I would imagine trading Tim Lincecum is not something that will happen. Timmy has put up a 4.26 ERA, 3.34 FIP in 116.1 IP in 2013.