Tim Lincecum asks for $21.5 million in arbitration

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Unable to come to terms with the Giants before figures were exchanged Tuesday, Tim Lincecum asked for a record $21.5 million in arbitration.

The Giants proposed a still impressive $17 million salary for their ace.

Lincecum’s filing is a record request for a player with less than six years service time. The Yankees’ Derek Jeter held the previous high mark, asking for $18.5 million in 2001. He avoided arbitration by signing a 10-year, $189 million deal then. Roger Clemens asked for $22 million from the Astros in 2005 after accepting arbitration as a free agent (he later settled for $18 million).

Lincecum just finished up a two-year deal that paid him a $2 million signing bonus, $8 million in 2010 and $13 million last season. He would have been a super-two player in 2010, so he still has two years of arbitration left before becoming a free agent after 2013.

Dodgers plan to tab Clayton Kershaw for Game 1 of World Series

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MLB.com’s Ken Gurnick reports that the Dodgers plan to tab ace Clayton Kershaw for Game 1 of the World Series. Nothing is set in stone yet ahead of Tuesday’s Game 1 of the World Series. In the event Kershaw can’t start Game 1, Rich Hill would start. Otherwise, Hill would start Game 4.

Kershaw, started Game 1 and Game 5 of the NLCS against the Brewers, then closed out Game 7 with a flawless inning. He was hit around to the tune of five runs (four earned) over three-plus innings in Game 1, but rebounded for seven innings of one-run ball in Game 5. He struck out two en route to sending the Dodgers to the World Series in the ninth inning of Game 7.

Kershaw also tossed eight shutout innings against the Braves in Game 2 of the NLDS. Overall, he has a 2.37 ERA in 19 innings this postseason. There was no doubt who would be the Dodgers’ first choice to start Game 1, but it’s a relatively recent situation where the ace of a team also closed out the final game of the previous series.

Hill has put up a 2.61 ERA in 10 1/3 innings this postseason. While he doesn’t have Kershaw’s pedigree, the Dodgers would be confident having him lead off the series. Hill was excellent down the stretch last year, helping the Dodgers reach Game 7 of the World Series against the Astros.

The Red Sox plan to start Chris Sale in Game 1 now that he’s recovered from a brief stint in the hospital due to a stomach ailment. The lefty has a 3.48 in 10 1/3 innings in the playoffs this year. He’s among a handful of candidates for the AL Cy Young award after posting a 2.11 ERA in the regular season, but his lack of innings (158) may hurt him.