Tim Lincecum pitched a no-hitter last season.
That apparently was enough for the San Francisco Giants to reward him with two-year, $35-million contract through the 2015 season.
Either that or the Giants management was stuck in some sort of time warp when it reached the agreement -- which also includes a full no-trade clause -- with the pitcher who has spent all seven of his major league seasons in San Francisco but was due to become a free agent in the off-season.
Lincecum won National League Cy Young Awards in 2008 and '09 and was a key reason the Giants won the World Series in 2010, posting earned-run averages of 2.62, 2.48 and 3.43 in those years. He hasn't had a winning season since, although he went 13-14 with a 2.74 ERA in 2011.
But he hasn't been the same guy in the last two seasons. Not even close. In 2012, he went 10-15 with a 5.18 ERA and was reduced to the role of reliever -- albeit an effective one -- during the team's postseason run to another World Series championship.
Last season he returned to the rotation and was 10-14 with a 4.37 ERA.
Still, Lincecum only needs to pass a physical to get a two-year deal that is worth just $5 million less than the one he just completed.
Maybe the Giants just couldn't bear the thought of seeing a guy who has done so much for the organization in another team's uniform. Or they're still rewarding him for his considerable past accomplishments.
Or perhaps they know something the rest of us don't. After all, they're the ones who have won two of the last three World Series.
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