Lincecum set for Angels debut in Bay Area on MLB.TV
Scherzer goes for Washington; Cubs' Lester looks to keep rolling
By Chad Thornburg
Tim Lincecum will make his highly anticipated Angels debut today, just across the bay from where he spent the first nine seasons of his career playing for the Giants.
Lincecum, who turned 32 on Wednesday, is making his Major League comeback with Los Angeles, coming off September hip surgery. The two-time National League Cy Young Award winner hasn't pitched in the big leagues in nearly a year, last taking the mound for the Giants on June 27 last season.
Fans can catch Lincecum's outing, along with the rest of the day's 15-game slate, streaming live on MLB.TV.
MLB.TV Premium returns with the same features as last year, and this week it is on sale for $49.99 -- 50 percent off -- for Father's Week. This package has the best value and provides access to more than 400 devices and a free subscription to the MLB.com At Bat Premium app (a $19.99 value). It offers the best picture quality ever -- a new 60 frames per second -- for supported devices. You can watch a single team's live out-of-market games in full HD.
The new MLB.TV Single Team package is also now available as an $84.99 yearly subscription. You can watch a single team's live out-of-market games in full HD.
Here's what to watch for throughout the day (all times in ET):
Lincecum debuts in Oakland: LAA@OAK, 4:05 p.m.
Lincecum impressed in his three rehab starts for Triple-A Salt Lake, culminating with a seven-inning one-hitter in Fresno, Calif., on Sunday in which he walked one and struck out eight. In total, Lincecum had a 2.65 ERA with 19 strikeouts against six walks in 17 innings.
"I think he's going to be able to come in here and contribute," Angels general manager Billy Eppler said. "He's going to be able to locate his secondary stuff, locate his fastball. He's going to get them with moxie and some deception and pitchability."
Lincecum's opponent will be A's reliever Andrew Triggs, who will be making his first Major League start. Triggs has pitched in 10 games and is 0-0 with an 8.00 ERA.
Stat that matters: Lincecum faced the A's 10 times as a member of the Giants. He went 5-3 with a 2.70 ERA through 66 2/3 innings in those Bay Bridge Series contests.
Harper heats up: WSH@SD, 10:10 p.m.
After a scorching start to the season, Bryce Harper's bat has cooled. The Nationals outfielder may be on the verge of breaking out of his slump, however; he snapped a 14-game homerless streak in Thursday's series opener in San Diego, and has traditionally hit well against the Padres, batting .453 (29-for-64) with six homers and 24 RBIs entering today.
"I had heard that this is where Bryce kind of took off last year, that's what the guys on the team were telling me," Washington manager Dusty Baker said. "So maybe he needed some San Diego and some Cali air."
Max Scherzer will get the start for the Nats, coming off a stellar outing against the Cubs. The right-hander struck out 11 batters and carried a perfect game into the sixth inning. The Padres will counter with Colin Rea, who will try to rebound from the shortest outing of his career Monday. He allowed eight runs over 2 2/3 frames, taking the loss vs. Miami.
Stat that matters: Scherzer has been especially tough on right-handed batters this year. He's limiting them to a .166 on-base percentage. That ranks first among all qualified starting pitchers and is well below the league average (.313).
Lester in peak form: PIT@CHC, 8:15 p.m. Jon Lester has been at the top of his game of late, going 4-0 with a 0.59 ERA in his last four starts. His season ERA of 1.89 is the third-best mark in the Majors. Lester will look to keep rolling when he toes the rubber against Jonathon Niese and the Pirates today at Wrigley Field. Niese struggled against another NL Central opponent in his last start, surrendering eight runs on 11 hits and two homers in 5 1/3 innings against the Cardinals on Sunday. He didn't fair much better in a meeting with Chicago in early May, yielding five runs and taking the loss at PNC Park.
Stat that matters: Lester hasn't issued a walk in any of his last three starts. He's the first Cubs pitcher to do so in three straight games in the same season since Greg Maddux in 2005.
Greinke eyes 10th win: ARI@PHI, 3:05 p.m. Zack Greinke enters today's matchup with the Phillies at Citizens Bank Park having won each of his last six starts, posting a 2.05 ERA in that span. Greinke has rebounded nicely from a bumpy beginning to his Arizona tenure and appears to have regained his ace form. His opponent, Philadelphia's Jerad Eickhoff, has also been excelling lately. The right-hander has allowed just three runs over his last three starts, a span of 19 2/3 innings.
Stat that matters: Opponents are chasing on 39.4 percent of Greinke's pitches this year, which is the highest rate among all qualifiers.
MLB.TV Premium subscribers get the Mosaic View -- split screen or quad, available on PC or Mac only. That always comes in handy, especially when scoreboard-watching looms. MLB.TV Premium and MLB.TV Single Team subscribers both enjoy HD and both will get real-time highlights and player stats automatically loaded moments after they occur (only for the game you are watching with MLB.TV Single Team, and for all games with MLB.TV Premium).
Chad Thornburg is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.