Tim Lincecum has stunk on ice for most of the year, but despite another shaky start yesterday, Bruce Bochy says he likes how Lincecum is throwing lately — he says he’s been progressing — and that it’s not gonna keep him out of the playoff rotation:
That progression has earned Lincecum at least one more start. The right-hander said after Sunday’s game that he has been told he’ll get a postseason start, although he’s not sure about the details.
“I’m okay with anything,” he said. “As long as I can help out the team in any way, that’s all I’m looking for.”
I presume the rotation will go Cain and Bumgarner in the 1-2 slot and then the hot-of-late Zito? So do you put Lincecum ahead of Vogelsong? I probably would, but it’s not the easiest call.
Either way, when Lincecum is on he’s great and the 5+ ERA is all erased for the postseason. But you have to figure he’ll have a short leash.
I would hope by now that I no longer have to preface All-Star talk with my usual “none of this matters” disclaimers, but please keep all of that in mind when I mention that Nick Markakis is leading all National League outfielders in All-Star voting.
Markakis, with 1,173,653 votes, has surpassed the slumping Bryce Harper in that category. Harper has 1,002,696 votes. The third place outfielder is Matt Kemp of the Dodgers with 925,697. Fourth place — Charlie Blackmon of the Dodgers — is like 300,000 votes back of Kemp.Yes, Markakis, Harper and Kemp may be the starting NL outfield. Brandon Nimmo — not on the ballot — should be grumpy, but he’ll get his chance I’m sure.
The thing about it: Markakis, for as unexpected as his appearance may be on this list, deserves to at least be in the top three. He’s second in WAR among National League outfielders behind Lorenzo Cain. He’s slowed down a good bit in June and he’s coming off of a 2017 season in which he had a 96 OPS+ and 0.7 WAR, but he’s having quite an outstanding season. I write that mostly so that there is a record of it come October and we’ve all forgotten it.
Seriously, though, good for Markakis, who has never made an All-Star Game. Good for Kemp too for that matter, who most people assumed was a walking — well, limping — corpse heading into this season. Good for Harper because anything that can keep up the guise of him having a good year when, in reality, he’s really not, will help his confidence as he heads into free agency.
Finally, good for the American League, who will likely get to face a far, far inferior National League team next month in Washington.
The rest of the voting: