Giants, Lincecum avoid arbitration with two-year agreement

The Giants have reached a two-year, $23 million contract with ace Tim Lincecum, which allows the two sides to avoid an arbitration hearing that was scheduled for today.

According to, Lincecum will receive $8 million this year and $13 million in 2011, as well as a $2 million signing bonus. He also has a chance to earn performance and award bonuses, although no details have been provided on what those incentives are.

This is great news for both sides, as arbitration hearings can sometimes get messy between team and player. Lincecum had filed for $13 million in arbitration, which would have broke Ryan Howard’s mark of $10 million in 2008. The Giants submitted $8 million for Lincecum, which was viewed by many to be a lowball offer for a two-time All-Star and Cy Young winner. Lincecum also owns a 40-17 record and a 2.90 ERA with 676 strikeouts in only three seasons.

After overpaying for Barry Zito, Aaron Rowand and Edgar Renteria (just to name a few) offer the last couple of seasons, the Giants made the right decision coming to an agreement with Lincecum before the hearing. Along with Pablo Sandoval, Lincecum is the face of the franchise and the ace of a fantastic pitching rotation that also features emerging star Matt Cain, top prospect Madison Bumgarner and 27-year-old Jonathan Sanchez, who threw a no-hitter in 2009.

Now that they have come to terms with Lincecum, the Giants can focus on what hopes to be a successful 2010 campaign. They have enough pitching to challenge for a postseason berth, but their offense has been among the league’s worst for several years now. The club hopes that the moves they made this offseason (i.e. signing free agents Mark DeRosa and Aubrey Huff, as well as re-signing Freddy Sanchez and Juan Uribe) will be enough to get the Giants back into the postseason.

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