Lincecum Is No Dope When It Comes to Salary

By Joe Kukura
|  Tuesday, Jan 19, 2010  |  Updated 8:44 PM PDT
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Tim Lincecum is looking for a big raise.

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On the same day he was fined $513 for possessing marijuana and a pipe, pitcher Tim Lincecum was offered $8 million to pitch for the San Francisco Giants in 2010.

But Lincecum is no dope. He's asking the Giants to puff up that total to get his salary a bit higher.

Lincecum and the Giants are involved in salary arbitration, a process where an independent third party decides a player's worth and his salary going forward. The process began Tuesday, when both sides made their initial offers.

Sports Illustrated's Jon Heyman reports that the Giants offered Lincecum $8 million a year. Lincecum, meanwhile, asked the Giants for $13 million a year. The two sides are likely to eventually agree somewhere in the middle.

Lincecum's number is the highest salary ever requested in Major League Baseball salary arbitration. The most any player has gotten out of salary arbitration previously is $10 million annually.

But if your teammate Barry Zito was making $18 million a year to lose more than twice as many games as you ever do, you'd be requesting a pretty sizable raise too. Timmy is a two-time Cy Young award winner, and by far the best player on the team.

His current salary is a measly $650,000. His request for $13 million per year represents a raise of 2,000 percent.

This season, when his teammates call him "Tiny Tim", they won't just be teasing him over the size of his bank account.

Joe Kukura is a freelancer writer who kept getting mistaken for a girl when he tried to rock a Tim Lincecum mullet.

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