Can the small sample size of Tim Lincecum’s 2 starts give us answers to the entire season? Well if you believe his velocity cannot increase and his differential between his fastball and change-up continues to narrow and his K rate dropping to go along with his BB/9 increasing, then yes…I have concerns. With only 7.2 IP so far this year he has a line of 0 Wins, 12.91 ERA 2.22 WHIP and most disturbing a .368 BAA. Everyone is hitting Lincecum so for this season.
Last night it was reported Lincecum only hit 92 MPH 4x on the gun. His average is now down to 90 MPH and his changeup is at 83-84 MPH. Once the discrepancy between the two narrows his change-up becomes less effective. Couple this with him scrapping his slider all together this season (to avoid injury he stated) and he is no more than an average 2 pitch SP. Unless he regains some velocity, brings back the slider, or alters his inventory of pitches he has/will lose significant fantasy value.
I know we are only talking about two games but if he continues with mediocre stuff it is time to start some dialog with your other managers and try to move him based on his past CY Young performances. Today he is worth a top tier OF or MI. Next week if he has two additional lousy starts against the Phillies (he draws Halladay for that one) and then the resurgent Mets (where he had a 12.5K/9 and a 0.69 ERA last year) he may possibly seal his trade value and watch it fade lower and lower for the rest of the year. In one league I offered up Konerko and prospect Jarrod Parker for Lincecum after his 1st start. The Lincecum owner rejected the offer…today I am glad he did.