Tim Lincecum held his long-awaited showcase last week and is, presumably, negotiating with various clubs at the moment. Some have suspected that he’ll want to stay on the west coast and many thought that his hometown teams, the Seattle Mariners, would be a potential destination for him as well.
The former is still possible, but the latter has been ruled out, it seems. According to Ken Rosenthal, the Padres and Mariners are not in the mix for Lincecum.
Lincecum reportedly wants to start, and it would seem that neither of those are an option for him in that regard. There is reportedly interest from the Giants, but only as a reliever, despite the fact that the back end of their rotation is a mess. The Angels just acquired Jhoulys Chacin, but they could probably still use a starter. Possibly the Dodgers as well, though they have a few pitchers expected to come off the disabled list in the coming weeks, so it’s hard to say how interested they’d be.
But San Diego and Seattle seem to be out.
The Yankees defeated the Astros 4-1 during Game 5 of the American League Championship Series on Friday night, staving off a potential postseason elimination and forcing the series to at least six games.
In just the third playoff appearance of his career, Yankees southpaw James Paxton turned in another impressive performance, limiting the Astros to four hits and four walks over six innings of one-run ball. According to MLB Stats, his nine strikeouts made him the second Yankees lefty to record multiple starts of 8+ strikeouts in the same postseason campaign, two decades after David Wells did so for the 1998 championship-winning club.
Paxton’s strong outing was backed by a handful of runs from DJ LeMahieu and Aaron Hicks, both of whom went deep against Astros ace Justin Verlander in the bottom of the first inning. LeMahieu’s leadoff solo shot marked his first postseason home run since Game 1 of the ALDS, while Hicks’ three-run 347-footer was his first home run of any variety since July 24 (and his first in the playoffs since the 2017 ALDS).
Neither team managed a single run after the first inning, leaving the two pitching staffs to duke it out for eight quick innings. Verlander outlasted Paxton — taking the game through the seventh with five hits, four runs, and nine strikeouts — but even with a flawless contribution from Brad Peacock in the eighth, there was little the hurlers could do to help the Astros solve Paxton and an airtight Yankees bullpen.
With the win, the Yankees will try to push the series to a full seven games in order to snatch the AL pennant from the Astros. They’ll have to do in Houston, however, as the Astros will regain home field advantage when Game 6 kicks off on Saturday at 8:08 PM EDT. Neither starter has been announced yet; per Houston skipper A.J. Hinch, it will likely be a bullpen day.