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Postby Guest » Thu Jul 24, 2003 11:19 am

Is he going to close all game for the pirates or is Lyon going to take over anyone got an inside scoop.

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Postby guest » Thu Jul 24, 2003 11:51 am

I live in Pittsburgh, so I guess I've got as much of an inside scoop as anyone ... The Pirates were planning on something of a closer by committee, with Lincoln, Torres, Sauerbeck, and/or Boehringer all getting opps, depending on the situation. But Sauerbeck almost blew a three-run lead in the ninth in the first save opp after Williams was traded, leaving two on with no outs for Lincoln, but he got a DP and a lineout to end it and notch the save. Then Mac just went with the hot hand and let Lincoln have the save opp the next day and, despite allowing two hits, he pitched a scoreless inning and got the save. Now Lincoln has been the Pirates' best reliever -- ERA lower than 1.5 (I think), around 10 K/2 BB in 15 or so innings, and so they're going to stick with the hot hand for now. He's a decent to good pitcher and should keep the "closer" role until he blows it badly, and that doesn't look like it's going to happen ... Yesterday he allowed only a 2-out walk to Casey while retiring the rest of the 2-5 batters in the Reds lineup, including Jose Guillen, with a 1-run lead. He's been solid ... I would stick with him unless he blows up at some point, at which point he would probably become a late-inning reliever again.

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Postby Guest » Thu Jul 24, 2003 12:27 pm

Good post. Indeed, the hot hand is the way to go, and after racking up a few he might get a game or two's worth of leniency. Again, I think the Pirates would benefit most with having Lyon as a starter since they need some help there, so Lincoln is as good as any for the closer spot.

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Postby guest » Thu Jul 24, 2003 6:50 pm

Update: Lincoln came in to pitch the bottoms of the 10th and 11th inning, allowing 1 hit and 1 walk to pick up the win. He had something like 23 pitches in the tenth inning, but instead of putting someone else in to get the save Mac left Lincoln in for the eleventh ... Good news is that this seems to imply that Mac doesn't trust anyone else to pick up a save (only Torres and Tavarez were left in the bullpen). Bad news is that after pitching 5 innings in 5 days he might not get any save opps that come up tomorrow. :-)

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Gotta Give Him Credit

Postby Dr. Duran Duran » Thu Jul 24, 2003 7:36 pm

Way to go Mike! Three saves and a win in a week is one hell of a line for a closer. Let's not forget the 0.00 ERA this week. I'd say Lincoln is a solid bet to remain the closer for the remainder of the year. AAA fastballer Duaner Sanchez might be brought up, but I doubt he'll get the job from Lincoln especially the way Lincoln has thrown this year. If I recall, his ERA is below 1.50 for the year and he's pitched 20 innings. Milwaukee could use this guy. Speaking of which...who the heck is closing there?
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