Tim Lincecum’s Contract Rejection Means Little For His Giants Future
By Bryan Rose
Last evening, reports surfaced that Tim Lincecum‘s people had rejected the San Francisco Giants’ offer of 5 years, $100 million dollars – and I use “Lincecum’s people” – because that’s exactly who it was, not Tim himself and that’s important to keep in mind.
Listen, the fact that Lincecum’s people have apparently requested a long term, “lifetime” deal if you will (despite the stupidity of it on the Giants side) is a positive outlook for Timmy remaining in black and orange once his arbitrational years come to an end. If Timmy wasn’t interesting in staying with the Giants long term, he’s not going to be open to that contract – so the fact that it was brought up should be welcome news to any Giant fan, despite the fact his “people” aren’t interested in the five year, $100 million dollars deal – and there’s really no reason they should be.
If Tim was to accept the said five year deal, Tim wouldn’t be a free agent until he reached 32/33 years of age – still young enough to get a solid contract, no doubt – but not ripe enough to cash in like he could (especially for a pitcher). By taking a one/two year deal with the Giants until he’s a free agent, Lincecum will allow himself to cash in at only 29/30 years of age which would potentially open up the window for him to become baseball’s first $200 million dollar pitching contract. So while a 4 or 5 year deal would be wonderful for the Giants, for Tim, not so much. It makes much more financial sense for Tim to play out his arbitrational years and sign a massive deal for the 2014 season and beyond, giving him both financial and contract security (as Melissa noted in her piece) for essentially the rest of his career.
In addition to the monetary side of things, being wanted is a natural human desire – silly as that sounds. Granted, I (nor do most people) don’t see Tim as the guy who wants the spotlight on him – exactly the opposite, really – but unlike the NFL and to a lesser extant in the NBA, young players like Lincecum have been locked into their respective franchises for many years (8 for Lincecum by 2013’s end) with zero ability to be coveted elsewhere thanks to arbitrational rules. You hear it all the time from players – they want to ‘test’ free agency, simply to find out their true worth and to be desired. Now, I’m not saying it’s the case with Tim since he doesn’t seem to fit that mold, but you never know once agents get in their ear. If nothing else, the thought is a threat to the Giants front office and they don’t need an outside commodity coming in offering some insane amount to their franchise player.
So what’s my point in all of this? In short, don’t worry. Tim Lincecum is a San Francisco Giant for the next two seasons at minimum – there is a long time before hands can get in the cookie jar for Lincecum’s services. His representatives are simply doing their do services, so anything you hear from the rumor mill regarding Timmy certainly isn’t coming from him. Agents have to do their job – scummy as that job is. The fact that some have taken the comments made recently as to reasoning why Tim himself doesn’t want to play in San Francisco is sad, because that’s simply rubbish.
Tim Lincecum is the San Francisco Giants – he’s not going anywhere – he loves it here. The Giants can compete financially for his services with anybody, more or less. So while you might hear a lot of “he said, she said” in the time until Lincecum signs on the dotted line, don’t believe it. The Giants aren’t going to let Tim go any place other than San Francisco.