Giants

Tim Lincecum is a graphic novel

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Tim Lincecum is a graphic novel

BOX SCORE

Tim Lincecum is a graphic novel, and given the events of Games 2 and 4 of this National league Division Series, the story is much fuller and plot-driven now.

Never mind that he had a lousy year lots of very good players do that at least once. Never mind that Giant fans and media chased miscellaneous tails for nearly a month trying to figure out what his role, if any, might be in the postseason.

His role is much worse than one could have imagined he is the idealized version of Guillermo Mota. And his results are galactically better.

People didnt notice all that much in Game 2, as his two innings tended to blur amid the smoking wreckage of the Giants 9-0 loss to Cincinnati. But Wednesday, his 4 13 innings in San Franciscos 8-3 Game 4 victory were exemplary, saving Barry Zito a humiliating potential defeat, eating up half the game and stomping on the Redlegs from the worrisome fourth to the anticlimactic ninth.

He allowed two hits and one run, none to either of Cincinnatis three best hitters, Joey Votto, Jay Bruce or Brandon Phillips. He struck out six, more than he had in 15 of his 33 regular season starts. He threw 55 pitches, 42 for strikes, a percentage of 76 percent (he was barely at 61 percent for the regular season).

He was, in short and in sum, the Lincecum he has been far too seldom for Giant tastes this year. And on a day that was San Franciscos from Angel Pagans home run two pitches into the day to Santiago Casllas uneventful ninth, Lincecum was the tale to be told.

Now before you get too far ahead of yourselves, this is not his place in the Giants future hierarchy. Long men dont get 20 million a year, and that isnt how Lincecums career ends unless the graphic novel has a very bad ending and is drawn by Frank Miller.

Not only that, the likelihood that he can make an appearance in Game 5 is unlikely, as he is not really built for that kind of workload. Oh, he could be a proud member of Johnny All-Staff if need be, but that would be only in an emergency, and a dire one at that.

Thus, the story only rises to a new plot point if the Giants win Game 5 Thursday behind Matt Cain, and San Francisco faces either St. Louis or Washington in the National League Championship Series. Heroes typically are not made in the game before the last one.

But redemption is always a nice hook, and between the two quiet innings he threw Sunday and the four dominant ones he threw Wednesday, Lincecum is the fresh beneficiary of fans notoriously short memory spans. Not just Giants fans, but fans in general. Two days ago, Coco Crisp was an iron-handed failure, and Tuesday he saved the Athletics considerable bacon.

Thats how the postseason plays not momentum-based, but event-based. Wednesday, Tim Lincecum reminded his constituents that he still has some events left in him. But it is still a strictly off-Broadway kind of stardom. Tim Lincecum didnt master the art of being Guillermo Mota. He just showed that he will not go quietly, and his graphic novel will not end with the thud of an oatmeal balloon.

Former Giants infielder replaces Dodgers' star shortstop on NLCS roster

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USATSI

Former Giants infielder replaces Dodgers' star shortstop on NLCS roster

LOS ANGELES — Shortstop Corey Seager has been left off the Los Angeles Dodgers' roster for the NL Championship Series against the Chicago Cubs.

The Dodgers announced Seager's surprise omission due to a back injury on Saturday, several hours before Game 1 at Dodger Stadium.

Los Angeles also dropped reliever Pedro Baez from its roster. Infielder Charlie Culberson and outfielder Joc Pederson were added.

Chicago made only one change from the last playoff round, adding reliever Hector Rondon and removing reliever Justin Wilson.

Seager complained of back soreness during the Dodgers' NL Division Series clincher in Arizona on Monday, and 2016 NL Rookie of the Year didn't participate in team workouts this week. Still, manager Dave Roberts said Friday that he was very optimistic that Seager would play in the NLCS.

Seager was an All-Star selection this season while batting .295 with 22 homers and 77 RBIs as a key part of the top of the Dodgers' lineup.

Kike Hernandez, Chris Taylor and Culberson all worked out at shortstop Friday for the Dodgers. The versatile Taylor was the Dodgers' center fielder during the NLDS, but he made 96 appearances in the outfield this season and 44 in the infield, including 14 games at shortstop.

Pederson is batting .071 with no homers since July, but the Dodgers could need him in center field if Taylor plays shortstop.

Culberson famously homered to clinch the Dodgers' NL West title in announcer Vin Scully's final home game last season, but the infielder spent most of this season at Triple-A, appearing in only 14 games for the Dodgers.

Rondon was the Cubs' closer in 2014 and 2015, but moved to a setup role last season after Aroldis Chapman's arrival. He appeared in 61 regular-season games this year, going 4-1 with a 4.24 ERA in an up-and-down campaign.

Chicago acquired Wilson in a trade with Detroit on July 31, adding a veteran left-handed reliever who had 13 saves for the Tigers this season. The Southern California native wasn't great in his two months with the Cubs, posting a 5.09 ERA with 19 walks in 23 appearances.

Manager Joe Maddon chose Wilson for the NLDS over Rondon, only to switch it up against the Dodgers.

Bochy, Giants issue statement following manager's heart procedure

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AP

Bochy, Giants issue statement following manager's heart procedure

Bruce Bochy's minor offseason heart procedure went as planned, the team announced Friday afternoon. 

In a message passed along to beat reporters, Bochy said "the procedure went extremely well and I'm feeling better. I'm grateful for the doctors and want to thank everyone who has reached out with well wishes."

Bochy, 62, had an ablation procedure to help him deal with heart issues that have plagued him in recent years. The operation was his second of the year, but it was considered minor enough that it could be pushed back to the end of the season.

Cleveland's Terry Francona had a similar procedure this year and returned to manage, and Bochy has left no doubt about his future. 

“I don’t want anyone to think this has an effect on my work, or ability to work,” Bochy said last week. “This is something that is not uncommon.”