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The NLCS: A very hasty look; a paean to Tim Lincecum; an emergency open thread

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I've been without internet access for the last day—apparently my neighbors are huge BitTorrent fans, apparently that is cause for futzing with the entire complex's shared connection—and I have about nine minutes to talk about the NLCS. Let me give that a shot.

I should like the San Francisco Giants a lot more than I do. They've got Buster Posey, who is the perfect prospect, and Pablo Sandoval, who this year proved to be much more fun to watch if you aren't a San Francisco Giants fan. They've got Edgar Renteria, who is somehow only 33. They have Aubrey Huff hitting like he's the only worthwhile Devil Ray again despite having scraped along at more than a win below replacement level last season.

And they have Tim Lincecum, who will be a fascinating test case for all kinds of pitching concerns as he gets older. Will the lost velocity eventually dent his strikeout rate, and will he make up for it someplace else? Will his unique mechanics help him avoid the sketchy over-thirty history of pitchers who are so successful so early? Will his so-so win totals in what is presumably his peak cost him if he merits Hall of Fame consideration? He's perhaps the most stereotypically post-Moneyball great pitcher, and as he matures we'll be able to see just what that means.

And absent all that, he's just fun to watch. Nobody pitches like he does; if that means he'll be a little overrated by the time he's lost enough value to be overrated, that only means he'll be the Ichiro of pitchers.

But I just can't get excited about the Giants, and I can't be anything but bored by the Philadelphia Phillies, who are victims of their own greatness at this point. I still love Chase Utley, and Roy Halladay is a pleasure to watch, but I wouldn't mind seeing somebody else represent the National League this season, and the Giants have a good chance of making that happen. It's been a fun series, and tonight's game features another dream pitching matchup, but I've been totally divorced from rooting the entire time. The ALCS, on the other hand—I'm a little more partisan about that.