Phillies not among finalists for Tim Lincecum comeback

SAN FRANCISCO, CA - AUGUST 17: Tim Lincecum /

At least two teams are heavily interested in the two-time Cy Young winner, but the Phillies are not

Jon Heyman of FanRag Sports is reporting former San Francisco Giants ace Tim Lincecum has narrowed down his list of interested teams, and the Phillies are not among them.

Philadelphia was among several teams who watched the 33-year-old righty throw a showcase this offseason. Heyman says Lincecum is visiting teams whose spring training complexes are in Arizona, eliminating the Phillies in Clearwater, Florida.

The Los Angeles Dodgers and Texas Rangers are likely the finalists with one or two more teams connected to Lincecum, who hasn’t pitched in the majors since August 2016.

Lincecum won two Cy Youngs, three World Series, and made four all-star appearances with the Giants from 2007-15 and was among the best pitchers in baseball. Injuries derailed his career in 2012 and his ability to pitch effectively has hung on a thread.

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A degenerative condition in both his hips, likely stemming from unique, long-stretching pitching mechanics, was the main issue Lincecum faced. He received opportunities from the Angels in 2016 with nine starts, but he couldn’t keep his ERA under nine over his short summer stint.

Philadelphia is clearly looking for more starting pitching, and the name most heavily connected to them is former Oriole and Cub ace Jake Arrieta. General manager Matt Klentak is unwilling to give Arrieta the long-term deal he desires, making a move even tougher to get done.

Lance Lynn and Alex Cobb are other experienced veterans on the market, but their connections to the organization aren’t as strong as Arrieta’s.

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Aaron Nola will start opening day against Cincinnati and is expected to lead a group of Jerad Eickhoff, Vince Velasquez, and Nick Pivetta into the regular season. If a veteran isn’t added Ben Lively, Mark Leiter Jr., Jake Thompson, and Zach Eflin will compete for the fifth-starter job.