It’s been two weeks since I last wrote about Lincecum and the Cy Young Award, and I’d say he’s in better shape now than he was then.
Last night’s shutout took an eye-opening 138 pitches, something Bochy seems to think isn’t a problem, (although I sure worry), and nailed down his 17th win.
Lincecum’s record is now standing at a stellar 17-3 to Brandon Webb’s 20-8, and overall, our boy has to be the front-runner right now. The fact that a number of voters will simply look at Webb’s 20 wins cannot be ignored, but, come on.
Lincecum’s allowed 20 fewer earned runs, 20 fewer hits, and has 60 more strikeouts than Webb, leads the majors in strikeouts (237) and is second in ERA to only the AL’s phenom, Cliff Lee (2.43 to 2.36). Really, Lincecum’s only real flaw this season has been his walks allowed, (77). He’s held the opposition to a ridiculous .219/.295/.309 .604 OPS, allowing only 10 home runs, 50 RBI, and 232 total bases, all of which lead the majors. He’s far and away the best strikeout pitcher in the game, with 10.27 K/9IP, and has been overpowering all season long.
Again, he’s lost something like 4 wins to the bullpen or the offense, and we should be beyond won-loss records to decide who’s been the best pitcher in each league. It’s his Cy Young to lose right now, Brandon Webb has faltered down the stretch (allowing 6, 6, and 7 earned runs in his three tries at twenty wins before finally getting there last night), and Lincecum just threw his first career shutout.