Lincecum is ‘ecstatic’ about return to Giants
A long line of fans waiting to see Tim Lincecum curled around the corner and down a hallway on the suite level of AT&T Park in San Francisco on Saturday.
The former Washington Huskies pitcher had a pile of his baseball cards signed and at the ready to keep the morning moving smoothly at Giants FanFest. The fact he is back in the Bay Area is a big deal for “The Freak,” a longtime fan favorite who helped the Giants earn World Series titles in 2010 and 2012.
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For a few weeks last fall after the season ended without a playoff berth, Lincecum had doubts he would be back with the Giants and prepared himself for the unknowns of free agency. Then the two-time Cy Young Award winner received a $35 million, two-year contract Oct. 25 to stay with the only organization he knows.
“When we got to the point negotiations got finalized, it was just one of those things where I felt like I couldn’t say no,” the 29-year-old Lincecum said. “It wasn’t like I owed it to anybody, I owed it to myself. This team wants you, they want you bad and they’re showing that, so reciprocate that in appreciation. I tried to.
“I’ve been ecstatic about coming back ever since. The familiarities are always going to be the biggest thing for me.”
Lincecum planned to travel to Seattle in time to root for the Seahawks in Sunday’s Super Bowl from his couch.
Fister, Nats have deal
Right-handed starter Doug Fister and the Washington Nationals agreed to terms on a contract, avoiding an arbitration hearing.
The New York Post reported Fister will make $7.2 million this year and get an extra $100,000 if he pitches at least 200 innings.
Former Mariner Fister was acquired by the Nationals from Detroit in an offseason trade.
Florida State celebrates
An estimated 30,000 people descended on the Florida State campus in Tallahassee to celebrate the program’s third national championship.
Coach Jimbo Fisher and Heisman Trophy winner Jameis Winston were among the speakers.
Redshirt freshman quarterback Winston said, “It’s a new year and a new season and we’ve got to keep getting better, and it starts now. We’ve got to do it again next year.”
U.S. cuts Britain’s lead
Bob and Mike Bryan of the United States beat Dominic Inglot and Colin Fleming 6-2, 6-3, 3-6, 6-1 to reduce Britain’s lead to 2-1 in their best-of-five, first-round Davis Cup competition on a red-clay court at Petco Park in San Diego.
The winner will be decided Sunday in reverse singles, when Wimbledon winner Andy Murray of Britain faces Sam Querrey and James Ward of Britain plays Donald Young.
Bach has tough job
German Thomas Bach, 60, is presiding over the Sochi Games as head of the International Olympic Committee. For the first time in 12 years, someone other than Jacques Rogge will be in charge.
Bach, who was elected the IOC’s ninth president in September, starts with one of the most contentious Olympics in many years.
In Russia, Bach has to tread a fine line of supporting the host country and being attuned to the uproar over the law against gay “propaganda” and allegations of corruption in the $51 billion Olympic project. The threat of terror attacks by Islamic insurgents from the North Caucasus has added to the volatile mix.
Bach is to chair a one-day IOC executive-board meeting in Sochi on Sunday and convenes a 2½-day session of the full IOC general assembly beginning Wednesday. He is to speak at Friday’s opening ceremony.
• Renan Barao stopped Urijah Faber at 3:22 of the first round to keep his 135-pound championship at UFC 169 in Newark, N.J.
Meanwhile, Jose Aldo retained his 145-pound championship via unanimous decision over Ricardo Lamas.
• Dan Ellis made 26 saves against his former team and posted his 14th NHL shutout as the visiting Dallas Stars beat league-leading Anaheim 2-0. Trevor Daley scored in the second period and Jamie Benn added an empty-net goal with 29 seconds left.
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