Really, I don’t think I’ve ever seen an uglier picture of Tim Lincecum than the one at the top of this New York Times Magazine feature story about him. He looks like a cross between Anthony Kiedis and late-period Bob Dylan. I like all three of those guys, but man, it ain’t pretty.
Assuming you can get past that, however, you’ll be treated to a great feature on one of baseball’s best pitchers and arguably its most interesting. Well, great and interesting unless you’re an Indians fan and you don’t want to be reminded — again — that Lincecum would be pitching in Cleveland right now if the Tribe had offered him $600,000 more on his signing bonus in 2005. And this is fun:
He comes from a long line of physical and athletically gifted men. His grandfather, a part-time logger, could walk up and down stairs on his hands and fistfought as a hobby.
I like those bloodlines!
This is more significant for basketball fans than baseball fans, but Magic Johnson is taking over basketball operations for the Los Angeles Lakers. Dan Feldman over at PBT has the full story on that.
For our purposes, you probably know that Johnson is part of the Dodgers ownership group. Anthony McCullough of the L.A. Times got comment from the Dodgers, saying that despite his new full-time job, his status with the Dodgers will be unchanged:
Maybe I’m alone in this, but I’m not entirely certain what Magic does with the Lakers, so the first clause in Kasten’s comment may be doing most of the heavy lifting here.
Jon Heyman reports that the Nationals are closing in on a deal with catcher Matt Wieters. Joel Sherman of the New York Post reports that it’s a two-year deal. UPDATE: Ken Rosenthal reports that the deal is for two years, at $21 million. There is an opt-out for him after year one. He will get $10 million in 2017 and, if he returns in 2018, he’ll get $11 million.
Wieters was not expected to go this long without signing, but his market, which many thought would be robust, never materialized. The Nats had been rumored to be interested for months, but they were apparently waiting to swoop in late and get what one presumes will be a bargain.
Wieters, 30, finished last season hitting .243/.302/.409 with 17 home runs and 66 RBI in 464 plate appearances. The Nationals currently have Derek Norris and Jose Lobaton, so who falls where in the catcher fight in Washington is unclear, but one presumes that Wieters getting a two-year deal puts him at the top of the depth chart.