The Giants celebrated their second National League West title in three years on Saturday night at AT&T Park without a certain eccentric right-hander.
According to Andrew Baggarly of CSNBayArea.com, Tim Lincecum was sent home early so that he could rest up for his scheduled Sunday start. Once the Giants clinched with an 8-4 victory over the Padres, manager Bruce Bochy called him back to join in on the fun and told Yusmeiro Petit that he’d be taking the bump in the series finale. But Timmy was unable to return to the stadium because of congestion on the streets of San Francisco.
Which, as Baggarly explains, is highly unfortunate:
Two years ago, Tim Lincecum was a holy terror to anyone with a hot microphone in a champagne-soaked clubhouse. He snuck enough four-letter words on the air to make the FCC blush.
But Saturday night, as the Giants celebrated another NL West title, Lincecum was nowhere to be found.
The 28-year-old has bounced back nicely from a dismal second half, boasting a 3.06 ERA and 79/34 K/BB ratio in 79 1/3 innings since the All-Star break. He’ll take his next turn in the rotation later this week.
ESPN’s Jerry Crasnick reports that the Mariners are among the teams that have contacted the Reds about outfielder Jay Bruce. The Mariners enter play Wednesday 51-48, six games out of first place in the AL West and 4.5 games out of the second AL Wild Card slot. Adding an impact bat like Bruce could help in their effort to reach the postseason.
Norichika Aoki and Seth Smith have handled the bulk of the playing time in left field. While Smith has hit well, Aoki has not. Bruce came into Wednesday’s game against the Giants batting .271/.324/.567 with 24 home runs and a league-best 78 RBI.
Bruce can become a free agent after the season if his controlling team declines his $13 million club option for the 2017 season by paying him a $1 million buyout. If he’s traded mid-season, his new team won’t be able to make him a qualifying offer, so the club option may be more enticing than it looks at first glance.
A third-inning two-run home run by Adam Rosales off of R.A. Dickey put the Padres up 2-0, but it also helped the Padres tie a National League record. The Padres have homered in 25 consecutive games, matching the 1998 Braves, the 1994 Tigers, and the 1941 Yankees. The major league record is 27, set by the 2002 Rangers.
The Padres hit three in total on Wednesday in an 8-4 victory against the Blue Jays. One of those dingers was an eighth-inning solo shot by rookie Alex Dickerson, who has now homered in four consecutive games himself. The one he hit on Monday is worth watching, as it got into the upper deck at the Rogers Centre.
As the Padres recently traded Melvin Upton, Jr. to the Jays, Dickerson is likely going to see regular playing time. That’s especially true if he keeps hitting like this.