Tim Lincecum had the shortest start of his career Sunday, failing to make it out of the second inning against the Dodgers while allowing five runs and recording four outs.
Early on this season Lincecum had a fantastic ERA despite poor velocity and underwhelming strikeout and walk rates, all of which has caught up with him lately.
Since shutting out the Dodgers for seven innings on May 20 to lower his ERA to 2.08, the two-time Cy Young winner has allowed 22 runs in 27 innings while striking out 23 and walking 15.
Sunday afternoon’s start was the fourth time in eight outings that he’s failed to complete five innings and he hasn’t completed six or more innings in back-to-back starts since May 3 and May 8. His strikeout rate is a career-low 7.1 per nine innings, his walk-rate is a career-high 4.4 per nine innings, and his average fastball is down to 87.3 miles per hour at age 32.
Lincecum has been trending in the wrong direction for several seasons now, but he looks awfully close to no longer being a viable rotation option for the Giants with Jake Peavy set to come off the disabled list and Matt Cain soon to follow.
LOS ANGELES — Los Angeles Dodgers reliever Joe Kelly had his suspension for throwing pitches near the heads of Houston hitters reduced to five games on appeal.
Kelly was originally penalized eight games by Major League Baseball on July 29, a day after throwing a 96 mph fastball near the head of Houston’s Alex Bregman and two curveballs that brushed back Carlos Correa.
The Dodgers on Wednesday confirmed the reduced penalty.
Kelly went on the 10-day injured list retroactive to last Sunday with right shoulder inflammation. He will serve his suspension when he returns.
After striking out Corea, Kelly curled his lip into a pouting expression and exchanged words with the shortstop.
Benches cleared after Kelly’s actions during the sixth inning of Los Angeles’ 5-2 win at Houston in the teams’ first meeting since it was revealed the Astros stole signs en route to a 2017 World Series title over the Dodgers.
Dodgers manager Dave Roberts served his one-game suspension the same day the penalty was handed down. Astros manager Dusty Baker was fined an undisclosed amount.
Kelly denied that he purposely threw at the Astros. He has previously been suspended in his career for throwing at a batter.
The penalties were imposed by former pitcher Chris Young, MLB’s senior vice president of baseball operations, who issued his first ruling since taking over the job from Joe Torre.