When today started I had all these visions of grandeur, that I’d write some poetic 1500 word recap of the first ever appearance of appearance by Tim Lincecum in Seattle. But my friend had a 50th birthday, and after watching all of Lincecum’s outing I left for that. Part of that was amazing to me, because I have a friend who just turned 50 years old. He’s one of those guys that are 50 going on 17, and at 50 years old he’s almost double my age, but damn, I have a friend that’s 50. Another realization is that Tim Lincecum isn’t that good anymore, which from a utilitarian perspective is much more important.
I’ve always felt like the best comparison for Lincecum among all legendary pitchers is Pedro Martinez. We’ve tried to call guys the “next Pedro Martinez” for quite some time, and more often than not those guys end up being the last Ramon Ortiz. Another one of those guys, and also an Angel when the comparison was made, is Ervin Santana. I assume by the fact that the whole world isn’t talking about Santana that he didn’t complete his perfect game tonight. Unless ESPN is just tired of perfect games. But Lincecum is another one of those guys that loses velocity as he approaches 30, and he’s been able to be successful because his stuff is very pitchable. I hope this isn’t the future for Felix, and considering their very contrasting body times there’s no reason to believe that Felix can’t recover or overcome his velocity issues, but still.
Lincecum gave up two homeruns in the first inning though, including an absolute monster shot to Jesus Montero, but then he pretty much cruised until the fifth. Lincecum isn’t dominant anymore, but he still managed 12 missed bats and six punch outs in 89 pitches over five innings.
Kevin Millwood had the kind of night that gets too much credit. He’ll be called “gutty” or some version of that by a lot of people, but that’s lame. He wasn’t good today, and he happened to out-result his peripherals tonight. With apologies to Dennis Green, he is who we thought he was. He’ll locate ok, he’ll get hit some, we hope he combines those things and the home ballpark he plays in to outperform the very-little money the Mariners are paying him. The results of that have been better than we expected this year so far.
At one point during the game though, Millwood got a Giants batter into an 0-2 count with a man on second and Jesus Montero came out to talk to him on the mound. Part of this may have been to call the pitch without having to tip the signs, but it was funny to me that the next pitch was a curveball hung in the middle of the zone. It was lined into center.
ESPN, who now owns hit tracker, says that Montero’s homerun went 445 feet. That’s a blast. It’s especially a blast to left field off a righty’s bat.
The Mariners won 7-4.