Kansas City Royals: Five Bargain Free Agent Starter Candidates

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Mandatory Credit: Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

Tim Lincecum

There was a time, in the not so distant past, when Tim Lincecum was one of the best starters in baseball. He made four consecutive All-Star Games, won two Cy Young awards and was a key piece of the Giants winning the 2010 World Series. However, since the 2011 season, Lincecum has not been close to the same pitcher, posting a 39-42 record with a 4.68 ERA and a 1.402 WHiP.

Even if the days of Lincecum being a dominant starter are over, he can still have his moments where he taps back into his brilliance. Before his final two starts of the season, Lincecum had a 3.31 ERA and a 1.350 WHiP, striking out 57 batters in 73.1 innings. it was beginning to look like he had started to figure out how to pitch with his diminished velocity.

There are major warning signs with Lincecum, particularly with his troublesome hip. After being placed on the disabled list when he was hit in the elbow with a line drive, Lincecum was diagnosed with a degenerative hip condition, potentially hindering his ability to produce, or even pitch. Any team that signs Lincecum will have to do so with the knowledge that his hip issues could keep him from a full season.

If Lincecum is healthy, and that is a major question mark, his fly ball tendencies could play well in Kauffman Stadium. Should he be enough of a bargain, he may be worth a look for the Kansas City Royals.

Next: Does he have anything left?