Greinke or Lincecum in 2010?

Who should be picked first in 2010 drafts: Zack Greinke or Tim Lincecum? Both pitchers were ridiculously dominant in 2009, and will be fighting to take the baton from Johan Santana as the first pitcher taken.

During drafts last year, Lincecum was taken in the early to mid second round, with Greinke going in the seventh or eighth round. There is no chance that Greinke and Lincecum shouldn’t (I should say won’t, but some people just aren’t intelligent) be the first two pitchers off the board this year, but in what order? Even though I’m sure you’ve seen the numbers plenty of times with the Cy Young awards being handed out recently, let’s review each player’s fantasy numbers from the past season:

Lincecum: 15 W, 2.48 ERA, 1.05 WHIP, 261 K (225.1 IP)
Greinke: 16 W, 2.16 ERA, 1.07 WHIP, 242 K (229.1 IP)

With those numbers, how are you not a Cy Young winner (let’s not argue about that here). If you want to go a little bit deeper, here are some of my favorite non-fantasy stats for each player:

Lincecum: 10 HR, 47.5% GB%, 2.34 FIP
Greinke: 11 HR, 40% GB%, 2.33 FIP

No home runs, decent ground balls, and nearly identically brilliant FIP’s some how good these guys truly were in ’09. Neither season seemed to be a fluke, so we are going to have to look beyond the player to evaluate who should be drafted first. Both pitchers will put up great strikeouts, ERA’s, and WHIP’s next year, so the Wins will be called into question. To predict wins, we need to examine each team:

Giants - Awful offensive team, getting on-base at a .309 clip, worst in the major leagues. The defense, however, ranked 4th in the league in UZR, and the ballpark is perfect for pitchers. The Giants have money to spend and are actively trying to improve the offense to assist their excellent pitching staff.

Royals - How can I put this nicely? The Royals are bad. The offense is better than the Giants, but not by much. The defense, well, it sucked. Because of some bad contracts, the Royals won’t be able to acquire anyone of significance to help Greinke out.

Due to his situation, Lincecum is likely to get more wins during 2010, pushing him over the top for the first pitcher taken in drafts next year. While his end of season back problems may cause some concern, I’m not worried about them any more than I am any other potential injuries a pitcher can go through. If you’d rather go Greinke, I don’t think anyone will argue with you, but I’m taking Timmy.




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Zach is the creator and co-author of RotoGraphs' Roto Riteup series, and RotoGraphs' second-longest tenured writer. You can follow him on twitter.


43 Responses to “Greinke or Lincecum in 2010?”

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  1. Mike Ketchen says:

    Nice Piece, I will be curious to see if Zack is drafted as the second SP (as I feel he should be) Early ADP doesn’t appear so and I do not know why but I think the “experts” think he might be fluky. Thank god for CBS and Yahoo fantasy writers.

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  2. glp says:

    Intereting how Lincecum projects to have more wins (and I certainly understand that), but Greinke actually had more this year with a vitually identical season and that horrible team behind him – yeah, only one more win, I know, but still. And I’d have to agree that people think for some reason that Greinke was a fluke. He had an excellent 2008 season which for some reason flys below the radar. A lot of people, believe it or not, think he was a rookie this year, so I think that’s where some of the guarded enthusiasm comes. The guy always had all the ability in the world if only he could conquer his demons and I have no problem thinking that there will be many more great years from him if he stays healthy – something I feel safer about than I do with Lincecum.

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  3. Two Cys in a row places Lincecum at the top of the heap on a risk basis. The real question is whether Greinke will actually be the 2nd or 3rd pitcher taken.

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  4. No doubt in my mind that it’s Lincecum.

    It’ll be interesting to see how far Felix Hernandez is ADP wise from Lincecum and Greinke. 53.4% GB% in 2009, 56.8% GB% for his career. Strikeouts trending up, similar whiff rate to Greinke (22% to 22.3%) and generates more sings on pitches outside the strike-zone than Greinke.

    It wouldn’t shock me at all if Hernandez has a similar, if not better, season than Greinke in 2010.

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    • Zach Sanders says:

      Agreed. I almost added Felix into this argument, but I think he will still be undervalued because of all of the hype that Greinke got in the AL, but I wouldn’t hesitate to take him over Greinke

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      • Mike Ketchen says:

        You guys a really that convinced on Felix? He seemed to really turn the corner with his new delivery right around the time he became lights out. However, The command still was no where near that of Greinke as Felix was a hair above 3 and Zack was north of 5 I believe. I do not think Greinkes awesomeness can be understated. I truly believe Timmy, Doc and Greinke are in a seperate tier from everyone else.

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      • Zach Sanders says:

        I am. With the defense the M’s will put behind him, and his continued development (remember, he’s only 23), he has another great year in store for him. He won 19 games w/ minimal offensive support and I love his GB rate. I think Greinke and Felix will be a virtual toss up for next season.

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  5. Jimbo says:

    Tim in the second? Zack in 7 or 8? Wow does my league suppress pitching. Lincecum went late third last year, and Greinke went in the 11th! It is a domino effect. Since everyone knows there’s a lust for offense early, well, it creates even more.

    I agree with the park/team assessment favoring Tim’s wins, but what about the age factor? Do we assume Tim is immune from too many “pre-age 25″ innings?

    Nevermind. Just noticed Zack is only 8 months older…wow did he come up young.

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  6. Dan says:

    Who would you take forst in a scoresheet draft? That removes the question of team support (by and large).

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    • Zach Sanders says:

      Interesting question. I haven’t been in a scoresheet league yet (although I’ve always wanted to, just never got around to it).

      I’d probably take Timmy, because of his higher strikeout rate.

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  7. AC_Butcha_AC says:

    I looked at Greinke’s stats and I just was really surprised about his FIP. We know the Royals were a terrible defensive team in ’09, posting a -49.9 UZR as a team which is dead last in MLB. But there is obviously a strong correlation between a team’s defensive skills and a team’s FIP.

    Here are the top 3 UZR teams and their pitching:

    Mariners: 3.87 ERA, 4.39 FIP, -0.52 E-F
    Rays: 4.36 ERA, 4.37 FIP, -0.01 E-F
    Reds: 4.18 ERA, 4.63 FIP, -0.45 E-F

    Well, I think I’m not telling anyone anything new here that two pitchers with the same ERA but playing on a great defensive / poor defensive team will obviously have a large difference in their respective FIPs.

    Now here is my point:

    Zach Greinke’s E-F was a -0.17, while his team posted a +0.47.

    Well to me that means he either was actually getting way above-average defensive support from his team while pitching, or he was just really lucky with his defense, or he somehow managed to influence the outcome of the batted ball.

    I’m not going to tell you, that he is a magician, who magically turns batted balls in outs, but he was quoted, to try to pitch for more flyballs, because his oufield has much better UZR ratings, than the Royal’s Infield. And he tries to keep his FIP low. That is really impressive. It looks like he managed to significantly increase his performance because of his knowledge of advanced statistical analysis.

    This is my very first post here… and I know this is not right in the topic, but it just caught my eye.
    I would like to add, that I am a big time baseball-fan and player from Germany… born and raised here, but just a big baseball fan. And for that reason my English is not the best you are going to see, but I hope you awesome guys could enjoy my comment. If anything unclear, ask me.

    best wishes AC_Butcha_AC

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    • SaltyBiscuits says:

      It’s cool to see baseball fans from overseas. I liked your post. I think Greinke has shown an ability to control, to some extent, the outcome of his batted balls. His Slider and Fastball pitch values were both excellent showing plus movement and location. Coupled with his excellent control, he can often keep the ball in spots where it can’t be crushed.

      I own him in a dynasty league format so as you could imagine, I am a pretty big ZG fan.

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  8. Kyle says:

    Why is Greinke the automatic second pitcher picked? This was his first dominant(even all-star type season.) In 2008 he had a really solid season, but how do you know he has another ridiculous season?

    I’d take Doc over him(especially since he’s pitching for his next contract and to get the hell out of Toronto.) I’d also take Verlander over him. Who has a ROY, 2 all-star teams, and led the majors in k’s and wins.

    He’ll be the next pitcher to strike out 300 guys, because unlike Lincecum he’s a big guy who throws 100 mph and will throw more innings and get more starts(and wins.) His WHIP and ERA weren’t as impressive, but I think he turned a corner last season… the cat already has a no-hitter, and 5 games last year he had no-hit stuff.

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    • Matt B. says:

      Easy on the get the hell out of Toronto, Toronto is a word class city miles ahead of almost any city in the US, outside of New York, Chicago and L.A. We have a billionaire owner who has stated if the team is competitive will spend what BOS, LAA etc are spending. Toronto truly is an amazing city, I’ll take it you have never actually been there. I have been to NY, CHI, LA and all are great, but TO is up there dude…

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      • rotofan says:

        I’m just guessing you’re a Canadian because your reaction is the sort of comment I too often hear from Canadians — very quick to take offense with any perceived slight from an American. I say this as an American who has spent the past 12 years living and working in Ontario, not far from Toronto.

        Toronto is a great city and I say that as someone who grew up in NY and has lived in LA, Boston and Washington. I wouldn’t say it’s “miles ahead” of almost any other American city beyond the three you mentioned because there are many wonderful American cities – San Francisco is my personal favorite.

        But that’s all besides the point. I don’t know Kyle but my guess is he was making a point about the Blue Jays, not the city of Toronto. Since Halliday joined them the team hasn’t been close to the playoffs and at his age he want to pitch for a winner.

        Who is the billionaire owner you speak of? Ted Rogers died a year ago. The new GM says he hasn’t been told his budget for next year. His cornerstone strategy is to invest more in scouting because the team can’t compete in payroll. That may pay dividends — in four or five years, by which time Doc will be at or near retirement.

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      • Matt B. says:

        “Rogers Corp”. has more money than George Steinbrenner & Co., just not his baseball related revenue stream obviously.

        I think it is smart for the Jays to move him, let’s just not get it twisted, it has nothing to do with the city.

        San Francisco, while gorgeous, also has about 3x the crime rate, poverty and is way more expensive than TO. I don’t even see it (TO)close compared to most US cities, which ones are you speaking of in terms of overall living??

        For what it’s worth in a lot of my fantasy/simulation league’s over the past 10-15 years have involved many great Americans, but their knowledge (or lack thereof) of Toronto (or anything Canadian) is pretty lackkustre (borderline sad) and I often hear Toronto called a “hell hole” with absolutely no merit/knowledge.

        Oh, it’s Halladay btw, not Halliday!

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      • rotofan says:

        The billionaire owner you referred to is dead. As far as spending when he was alive, the team has been out-spent by Boston and the Angels by a huge margin. Boston hasn’t spent less than $120 million since 2003. The Angels have averaged between $105 and $110 million during that span. The Jays have spent $51 million, $50 million, $45 million, $72 million, $82 million, $98 million and $81 million. Soon after Rogers took over the team, payroll was slashed — that was the motivating factor in hiring JP, who promised to do more with less. Payroll jumped the last few years thanks in large part to some nightmare contracts – Wells, BJ Ryan and Rios. Every indication by the post Ted Rogers regime is that the team will spend less, not more — this year payroll was down $17 million. Halladay can’t wait to get out of Toronto and get to a contender — which is why the new GM is smartly moving more aggressively to trade him now.

        I know literally thousands of Americans and I have never heard one call Toronto a hell hole — most think it’s a great city. Maybe your American friends are just ribbing you.

        My point about cities is that preferences are largely subjective and what one prefers depends upon what is important to each person. I love SF because it’s beauty awes me; it’s restaurant scene is amazing, it has vibrant neighbourhoods, it’s pretty easy to get around and you’re a day’s drive to some amazing places – vineyards, Big Sur, redwoods. As for crime, it’s been generally better than Los Angeles, which you listed in your top 3. Have you lived in any American cities?

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      • Matt B. says:

        As a matter of fact, I have lived in the greater Detroit area, a fine city with a tarnished reputation, with one of the worst crime rates and unemployment of all time so I am not biased by any means. Even most people from Michigan have little knowledge of TO to be honest.

        You might want to read the latest from Paul Beeston (President) who has gone on record as saying if the Jays are close to a competitive state Rogers will have no problem spending as much as BOS, LAA, CHC. Don’t put words in my mouth, read my above post(s) I never stated the Jays HAVE spent as much, just the willingness to do so if the opportunity to win is evident, thanks.

        Yes, Ted Rogers died, but they didn’t bury his business with him, he was a figure head for years and Rogers Corp is one of the biggest corporations in Canada and North America, so not sure why you keep referring to our ‘dead’ owner. We are and have been owned by a multi-billion dollars corporation.

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      • rotofan says:

        Please provide a link to Beeston’s comments — the only ones I find support exactly what I wrote about why Halladay is leaving. From yesterday’s Toronto Star:
        ————————————
        Blue Jays president Paul Beeston isn’t backing down from recent statements about pitcher Roy Halladay’s unwillingness to re-sign in Toronto, but he still can’t figure out why his comments created such a splash in the media.
        Last Friday Beeston told the New York Post that Halladay, the winningest pitcher in franchise history and a free agent after 2010, was “not inclined” to sign a contract extension with the Jays.
        The comment travelled quickly across the Internet, adding momentum to Halladay trade rumours that have swirled since July, when former general manager J.P. Ricciardi first made public the club’s openness to trading their ace pitcher.
        But Beeston insists that what he told the Post isn’t new information, and that “nothing at all” has changed with Halladay, who went 17-10 for the Jays in 2009.
        He points out that Halladay has insisted since July that while he enjoys playing in Toronto, his main priority for 2010 and beyond is to play for a contender.
        And Beeston says the simple fact that Halladay hasn’t already signed an extension with the Jays is compelling evidence of the pitcher’s intentions.
        “If we could sign Roy Halladay to a long-term contract today, we would sign him,” Beeston said. “Why is this new? Roy Halladay has got this aspiration to play in the post-season, and you can’t hold that against him.”
        ———————–

        As for Beeston and team spending, here’s what he said last January to the Sun:
        ———-
        “We can’t justify a $120-million payroll,” Beeston said. “We have to get the thing back to a break-even position. At that point, you can start increasing your revenue and then start increasing your salaries. The two are inextricably tied together. You cannot sustain losses forever . . . Spending $40 million on Rafael Furcal or $80 million on A.J. Burnett or, whatever Manny Ramirez is going to get, it just wasn’t going to work for us. We are going to fill from within and we feel we have a chance to step up again (in 2010),” Beeston said. “At $80 million we will be in the middle of the pack. We can win from there.”
        ———–

        As for Detroit. you’ve never lived in any other American city?

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      • Matt B. says:

        Quote from AA’s press conference when he took the GM job:

        “There’s a chicken-and-the-egg argument to be had over whether you first spend money on players to get the crowds or wait for the crowds before you spend on players, but Anthopoulos believes that will all take care of itself.

        He envisions the day when four million fans start streaming through the home turnstiles again and the Blue Jays have a payroll approaching baseball’s top five, somewhere around $120 million.

        “With respect to payroll, there’s really no defined number going into next season … ownership is fully committed to giving us the payroll if the right baseball opportunity presents itself,” said Anthopoulos. “This place can be an incredible opportunity because the fan base is here, when we start winning the fans will come out, there’s no doubt in my mind, and we do have the wherewithal with the market and with our ownership to keep our players going forward.

        “We certainly can be up there with the Anaheims, the Chicagos and even with the Bostons. When we do get to the point where we are winning, we can sustain it.”

        The vision is a grand one. Now to the business of delivering on it.”

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      • rotofan says:

        Let’s look at the progression of your claims:

        (1) We have a billionaire owner who has stated if the team is competitive will spend what BOS, LAA etc are spending.

        (2) No owner comments but you might want to read the latest from Paul Beeston (President) who has gone on record as saying if the Jays are close to a competitive state Rogers will have no problem spending as much as BOS, LAA, CHC.

        (3) No Beeston comments but consider this: “Ownership is fully committed to giving us the payroll if the right baseball opportunity presents itself,” said (rookie GM Alex) Anthopoulos.

        Needless to say, the new GM doesn’t carry the weight as the newish president who doesn’t carry the weight of ownership. While I like Alex Anthopoulos he doesn’t know yet what his payroll will be in 2010 and he certainly has no clue what it might be in future years, especially since Rogers Corp. is in a period of transition with the death of its patriarch.

        Beyond the issue of considering the source, I think you may be missing the central message, which is this: Don’t expect the Blue Jays to spend anything close to what the Red Sox and Angels spend. Certainly not at any time in the near future, which is the time period Halladay is most concerned about. From a CP story on the same press conference you mentioned:

        ——————
        The gist for fans seeking signs of hope and an imminent end to a post-season drought stretching back to 1993? Be patient, forget about a boat-load of free agent signings this winter to bolster the club, and prepare yourself, barring a miracle turnaround, for ace Roy Halladay’s departure, if not via trade then as a free agent after the 2010 season.

        “I know that everything we will do will be obviously to improve the team, but it won’t be the quick fix, or it won’t be to sacrifice the ability to have a long, sustained run of success here,” Anthopoulos said on a conference call ahead of his first general managers’ meetings, which start Monday in Chicago.
        ——————

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      • Matt B. says:

        Well, it would make absolutely ZERO sense to spend as much as the Sox, Angels at this stage, who on earth is available that would put them in the same category as the Yanks/Sox at a reasonable price?

        My whole point was to show that Toronto is not the ‘badlands’ it is made out to be, it is a great city to live jn, has ownership with deep pockets and they have obviously told Beeston and AA that it is willing to spend with the big boys should the need arise and it makes sense.

        Beeston is FAR from newish, he built the Jays along with Gillick back in the day and is a key piece going forward and all Jays fans are glad to see he is back, I am going on the assumption Beeston has spoken with ownership and also the assumption that AA has spoken with Beeston (considering he hired him for the job) and AA wouldn’t spout off about the willingness of ownership to spend with LAA and BOS should the need arise UNLESS it was warranted and discussed.

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      • rotofan says:

        As someone who worked for Paul Godfrey, I know Beeston’s history with the Jays. But he is NEW to the current ownership, having been hired on an interim basis a year ago and made permanent (by himself) just a few weeks ago. He has no track record with Rogers Corp. and no leverage yet with spending decisions.

        You are getting way beyond the scope of the issue at hand — whether Halladay wants to “get the hell out of Toronto.” He does. And that’s according to Beeston.

        Alex Anthopoulos said ownership will spend an unspecified amount more at some uncertain time when an undefined revenue level is achieved — and that it won’t happen for at least the next four years. That means nothing to Doc and he can’t wait to sign with a contending team. In short, the deep pockets of Rogers Corp mean nothing when there is no corporate willingness to reach into them.

        As for Toronto, I like the city, so there’s not a real need to continue defending it. It’s not New York but neither is any other city on the continent.

        Thanks for the exchange. The Jays have their challenges in front of them. Lind and Hill are exciting young players, Snider has promise and they’re knee deep in decent to good pitchers if they’re healthy. But their farm system is a weak on position prospects, their infield beyond Hill is shaky, especially if Scutaro signs elsewhere, and that Wells contract is an albatross — he’ll eat up more than one-quarter of their budget. Their division is a beast with the Yankees and Red Sox buying/trading for missing parts, the Rays with a slew of good prospects ready to step in and Baltimore on the verge of being decent.

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      • Matt B. says:

        You’re right, it’s scary because the BoSox/Yanks/Rays all have better YOUNGER talent (either MLB or minor league) and the O’s are gonna be pretty decent even as early as next year – with a solid young core developing. What a challenge!

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  9. wobatus says:

    I will be freezing Greinke, Lincecum, Hernandez and Santana in my league. Oh, and Tommy Hanson. Like the old man in the joke, I’m telling everybody. I had Lincecum and Santana coming into the 2009 season via trades and drafted Hernandez in round 3 and Greinke in round 4.

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  10. R M says:

    Lincy’s FB velocity dropped from 94+ the past 2 seasons to 92.4 in 2009. I’m not sure if his back had anything to do with that, but given his small size and huge innings load the past 2 seasons, he may be a pretty significant injury risk….

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    • Matt B. says:

      I’d chalk it up to maturing as a hurler, decreased velo with increased command.

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      • glp says:

        He’s too young to be losing velocity. He’s younger than Greinke by a few months, and Greinke’s velocity is INcreasing. Different people, I realize, but 25 year olds don’t typically lose velocity.

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      • saint says:

        he’s realizing that his off speed stuff is so ridiculously dominant (especially that change) that there is no reason to throw as hard as he can.

        i mean, his velocity was down but he actually pitched better than last year, and he was amazing last year.

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  11. Brett R says:

    I think that’s the point RM was trying to make. 25 year old’s don’t usually lose velocity, making the fact that he did, coupled with his back injury, concerning.

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    • Alireza says:

      The point is pretty moot. Its pretty well known that Lincecum focused on throwing more 2 seamers and changeups this year. His GB rate jumped 4%, his BB/9 dropped by more than half a walk and his BABIP dropped in what is likely a maintainable way. Also, his control was significantly better. That screams pitching smarter, not losing stuff.

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      • R M says:

        Here are his velocities in several starts in 2009:
        4/07/09: 92.51 avg, 95.1 max with the 4 seamer, no 2 seamer
        4/25/09: 92.6 avg, 94.8 max with the 4 seamer, no 2 seamer
        6/07/09: 91.89 avg, 94.9 max with the 4 seamer, no 2 seamer
        7/09/09: 91.58 avg, 93.9 max with the 4 seamer, no 2 seamer
        9/25/09: 90.76 avg, 93.5 max with the 4 seamer, threw 1 2 seamer
        10/01/09: 89.71avg, 92.2 max with the 4 seamer, 89.3-90.3 with the 2 seamer (threw 10)

        Not only is there definitely a trend in those starts, compare any of those with this april 2008 start:
        94.29 MPH average velocity, maxing out at 96.9 MPH.

        These starts are all chosen at random; they were not cherry-picked to fit my argument. There is a 4 MPH difference in 4 seamer average velocity and almost a 5 MPH difference in max velocity. The introduction of the 2 seamer obviously had nothing to do with this.Matt, you really think that’s all maturation and you’re not at all concerned by it? It’s enough to make me spend my late 1st/early 2nd round pick elsewhere….

        got all the data from Brooks Baseball

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      • Matt B. says:

        Well, it is a concern. But his K rates, outside swing % etc were all around or above career levels, his BB rate was well down and his overall numbers were unreal so unless he shows serious regression in the spring in terms of ‘stuff’ I am not that worried about him.

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  12. Frobozz says:

    I looked up Lincecum’s velocity readings from Brooks Baseball for starts with 10+ k’s from different months in 2008 versus 2009. The data is below. My conclusion from this is that there is no material difference between his velocities in 2008 and 2009. Note that the 9/14/09 start was his first one after he was out with back spasms.

    Date K’s Avg (FF) Max (FF)
    5/15/2008 10 94.3 97.6
    7/26/2008 13 94.0 95.8
    8/17/2008 10 93.3 96.0
    9/13/2008 12 94.4 96.6
    9/28/2008 13 93.5 95.2
    AVG 93.9 96.2

    Date K’s Avg (FF) Max (FF)
    5/21/2009 10 93.7 96.1
    7/27/2009 15 93.0 95.9
    8/23/2009 7 92.7 95.6
    9/3/2009 11 92.1 95.2
    9/14/2009 11 91.9 94.0
    AVG 92.7 95.4

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  13. Kyle M. says:

    Just for everyone who worries about Tim Lincecum and injuries to know is that his back injury was unrelated to baseball they said it was caused by him curling up reading a book on a seat in the airplane and its his only injury of his career. He is also probably the most athletic and flexible pitcher in the major leagues. He said his velocity is down because he is trying to be more accurate and not just throw hard. Also his motion is actually less likely to lead to injury because he uses his body more and puts less stress on his arm than an average pitcher.

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    • Matt B. says:

      Fact is, the injury rate for pitchers is 100%. Pitchers will different sorts of mechanics have been getting hurt for decades. He will break down like any other pitcher.

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  14. Eric Cioe says:

    You don’t lose 1.5 mph in one year because you’re trying to become more accurate. I could almost buy that theory but he can’t reach back and throw 97 like he used to. I’m a big fan of Lincecum’s mechanics but anyone who doesn’t find that velocity decrease a concern is nuts, in my opinion.

    Of course, it may simply be a mechanical change, like Verlander in 2008. In 2009 he was back up to averaging over 95 and hitting 98 whenever he wanted to, and his control was better than any point in his career.

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    • Matt B. says:

      Well, he was either throwing more of a cut fastball (which wasn’t properly registered) or he really did throw 10% less fastballs than 2008 (pretty big difference) so he wasn’t really relying on sheer velocity and power with his fastball and on the surface looked liked he was trying to “pitch” more.

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    • saint says:

      in his complete game against the a’s on june 23, 2009, facing his last batter of the game in the ninth inning, tim threw three fastballs. according to pitchf/x they were 96, 96 and the very last pitch he threw was 97 mph.

      so it looks like not only can he still reach back and throw 97, he can do it after throwing over 100 pitches.

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  15. MDS says:

    easy. Lincecum

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  16. SharksRog says:

    There are indeed question marks about Tim Lincecum:

    Why was his velocity down by 1.6 mph in 2009 after increasing slightly in 2008?

    Will his violent motion eventually do him in?

    But let’s not forget that there were tons of questions about him entering the 2006 draft, allowing him to fall to #10 overall despite having #1 overall stuff.

    What I like about Lincecum is his consistency. His highest ERA in 2008 was July,when it rose to 4.09. Yet in that month his K rate was 11.5 and his K/BB rate 5.25.

    His highest ERA in 2009 came in September/October at 3.38. Yet his strikeout rate was 11.5 and his hit rate 6.2.

    The only truly bad month in Lincecum’s career came in his first full month, June of 2007. His ERA was a horrendous 7.71 for the month — even higher before his final start. There was talk of skipping him in the rotation, putting him in relief, even sending him back to the minors.

    But in his final start that month, he pitched a four-hit shutout over seven innings, striking out eight. He followed that up with a seven-inning shutout over the Diamondbacks In his first start in July, striking out 12 while allowing three hits and no walks, and there was little question he was on his way to greatness.

    So, yes, the questions regarding the diminutive Lincecum will be slow in going away. But his answers have been very good and very consistent.

    I’m sure Will Carroll raised a few eyegrows three years ago when before Lincecum had pitched a single inning above Class A he said Tim would be his choice as his franchise pitcher over the next 10 years. Doesn’t look like quite as much of a longshot now, does it?

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  17. Anthony says:

    Can’t wait to see Felix’s numbers in a few years once he starts getting some run support.

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