KNBR, citing a currently unavailable report from Andrew Baggarly of the San Jose Mercury News, writes that pitcher Tim Lincecum’s Giants career is likely over after he suffered a setback in his rehabilitation from hip and back injuries.
Lincecum, who has a degenerative hip condition, had cortisone shots in his hips in July, but the discomfort has persisted. As a result, the right-hander is considering off-season surgery.
“The hip issue is still there,” Giants manager Bruce Bochy said Sunday. “Timmy hasn’t made the progress we would have hoped. I think he’s getting another opinion, so I guess the best thing I can tell you right now is he’s not close…He feels restricted when he’s throwing.”
Lincecum, 31, has made 15 starts for the Giants this season, compiling a 4.13 ERA with a 60/38 K/BB ratio in 76 1/3 innings. He will become a free agent after the season as his two-year, $35 million contract with the Giants will expire.
The first truly big free agent signing of the offseason has gone down: the Chicago White Sox just announced that they have signed catcher Yasmani Grandal to a four-year, $73 million deal.
Grandal, 31, was the best catcher available in free agency. He is coming off a fine year with the Milwaukee Brewers, with whom he had to settle for a one-year pact in 2019. He hit .246/.380/.468 with 28 homers and 77 driven in. It was his fourth straight season with 20+ homers. While his catching has been criticized due to some high-profile mistakes in the postseason, the two-time All-Star once again proved himself to be one of the best pitch-framers in the game if not the best. Between the bat and the glove he has a claim to being one of the best all-around catchers in baseball.
The signing leaves open the question of what happens to James McCann, who was himself an All-Star this year. It’s not that hard a question, of course, as Grandal is a far superior catcher to McCann in every respect. The Sox could make McCann a backup. Alternatively, they could try to trade him to fill other holes on the roster.
The White Sox finished 72-89 in 2019 but are showing signs of coming out of rebuilding mode and into contention mode. This signing pushes them a big step into that direction.