Freak show. 43 comments

Tim Lincecum in his rock star days.


Bartolo Colon, Doug Fister, Jesse Chavez, Matt Moore, Mike Minor, and now Tim Lincecum.

The signing of “The Freak” gives the Rangers the best pitching staff in baseball.

In 2010.

Too bad it’s 2018.

Once again, Jon Daniels goes shopping at the Dollar Store to try to plug major holes. It rarely works. But you have to give him credit for persistence.

For a brief, shining moment, Lincecum was a stud.

He won the Cy Young in his second season as a starter, for the Giants, in 2008, going 18-5 with a 2.62 ERA in 34 starts, leading the league in strikeouts with 265.

Then he came back the next year and won it again, going 15-7 with a 2.48 ERA, and once again leading the N.L. in strikeouts.

He followed those two Cy Young seasons with two more top-ten finishes in Cy Young voting.

Then, just as quickly as it happened, it all stopped.

In 2012, he led the league in earned runs allowed, losses, and wild pitches, finishing with an ERA of 5.18, but won his second World Series ring. His slide continued in 2013, and into 2014. By the time he and the Giants won their third World Series championship, he was relegated to the bullpen.

But in his nine seasons with the Giants, he had gained rock star like popularity, with his long flowing hair, funky delivery and quirky personality, thus earning the nickname, “The Freak.”

When he landed in Anaheim in 2016, he bombed: 2-6 with a 9.16 ERA in nine starts.

He didn’t pitch in 2017.

Now, after an open tryout where his fastball was clocked at 93, Lincecum has resurfaced with the Rangers, looking to stick in the bullpen, possibly even as a closer.

He hasn’t pitched since 2016.

He hasn’t had a good season since 2011. His new general manager, coincidentally,  is still running on fumes of 2011 as well.

Maybe it’s destiny. Or time for a time machine.