Tuesday, September 7, 2010
Lincecum's consecutive quality starts are encouraging
I am encouraged by most things Giants these days. San Diego is floundering while the Giants are surging. Huff may be awakening, Burrell the water buffalo and Jose Guillen the wounded Wildebeest are showing me good things as well.
Most of all, I am encouraged by Timmy Lincecum.
I'm not a 14 year old girl, so I cannot declare him "back" by any means. Two consecutive quality starts does not a man back make. His velocity is still a big red flag for me, but the return of Timmy's mental state, some run support, and all his pitches at the same time puts a a crooked grin on my face... not gonna lie.
Hypothetically, let's say he'll never throw 95-96 ever again. Let's say he'll top out at 93 for the rest of his career. That's not necessarily a bad thing. Sure it's not sexy, but it's possible to make things work.
Prior to this year, Lincecum was able to work off his fastball. It was always there, and it in effect made his offspeed pitches filthier. Now, it is up to him to re-learn pitching sequences, strategy, and gain some cunning, rather than just go balls-to-the-wall like a drunken college football player at a sorority house.
The more he figures that out, the more confident he will become. He is not remaking himself totally, but is still working out the kinks of a new approach-- in effect adjusting to the hitters who have adjusted to him. Hey, 11 K on Tuesday was proof of that.
He is the key to how deep we go into the playoffs, and I am encouraged by the effort in Arizona even more so than his 8 inning performance last week because he was able to do it back to back.
As I said before, enjoy the ride.