Tim Lincecum is gone to the Angels, which in terms of baseball is fine, and in terms of irrational fan love is a debacle. Probably the worst part about that involves hazy memories of 2002, mostly gone but still remembered enough through a heavy alcohol fog to make us think "Was there really a monkey there?" But! The second worst part is that this means Lincecum won't have a chance for his first career home run this year.
Sure, sure, the Angels do have away interleague games after this week. They play a 3-game set in Pittsburgh in early June, and go to Wrigley Field for two in mid-August. But Lincecum had more than six years with the Giants, and he didn't homer in any of them. Wouldn't that have been fun? Of course it would have! Here's a list of every pitcher to homer for the Giants since 2007, Lincecum's first year in the majors, and just remember, all of them were delightful:
- Noah Lowry
- Matt Cain (six times)
- Madison Bumgarner (12 times)
- Tim Hudson
- Ryan Vogelsong
- Jake Peavy
- Mike Leake
All of those were great! They were so great that just for a moment, we could all remember Mike Leake with anything other than irritated indifference. But that list includes a 40-year-old, a 38-year-old, and a man who is legally blind. That list does not include Tim Lincecum, and that's a damn shame.
I have compiled several points in favor of Tim Lincecum hitting a home run, and I'm proud to share them with you:
- Pitcher home runs are fun
- Tim Lincecum is fun
- Therefore, Tim Lincecum hitting a home run would be very fun
I think you'll find my logic works out very nicely here.
Now, I know what you're thinking. "Could Tim Lincecum even hit a home run?" It's a fair question. It's tough to remember him ever showing a whole lot of power. But let's look at his spray chart:
Now, that's mostly very pitcher, and not in a good way, but there is one dot that sticks out as maybe, just maybe, a home run that could have been:
Is there video? You'd best believe there's video!
Now, Tim hit that ball in San Francisco, so it had no chance. But if he'd happened to hit it in Colorado, you know what? It's possible. Maybe it could have gone out.
On the other hand, that was a line drive. While it would have gotten a bit more air under it in a hitter's park, that probably wouldn't have been enough. Should we check some of the other dots in the outfield? Might as well. How about the one towards the right field line from this one? It's much farther in, but the fence would be a lot closer too, so maybe that's another one that would have had a chance in the right place and at the right time?
Okay, guess not. Also lol mark derosa, but that's not important right now.
There's only one other option, really, and that's the blue dot in left field that's a little farther out than the other blue dots. Here's the problem: there isn't video of that. Here's the solution: there is video of a video of that. Let me explain:
This is the best chance. This is the most home run ball. If it had been Arizona with the roof open instead of San Francisco at night, then it could have gone out. If it had been Philadelphia or Cincinnati or Denver, then it's entirely possible. It could have happened. It didn't, and that's sad, but it could have. After all, in a world where this is possible: