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Tim Lincecum has daddy issues. Let's make him a character on 'Lost'

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During the time it takes Giants pitcher Tim Lincecum to hurl a baseball 60' 6", said implement can reach speeds of nearly 100 mph. Not-so-giant American Idol runner-up David Archuleta can make a pop diva weep with his rendition of "Imagine."

On the surface, it would seem these guys don't share much in common other than youthful visages that belie their ages. But if you dig a bit, you'll find that the most important thing they share is the very reason we know who these boy-men are: Underachieving fathers with penchants for vicarious living. Lincecum is currently the subject of Sports Illustrated's cover story. It details the unlikely rise to (sorta) dominance of this pitcher that most scouts wrote off as undersized and mechanically unsound. 

So, how did he do it? What shaped this unlikely rise?

Apparently, there's a method to Lincecum's mechanical madness. At one point in the article, the reader learns: "In the stands Chris (Tim's dad) would sit behind home plate and flash signals to Tim, who knew exactly what to correct. If, for instance, Chris slapped his thighs, Tim knew to "sit down on my legs" through his delivery, to use the lower half of his body more." We also learn in the article that Tim's dad could throw a pitch 88 mph at age 52. Those, friends, are the statistics of a sad, sad man.

The stage-parent antics of David Archuleta's father, on the other hand, were well documented, labeling him as "creepy and overbearing." Those are good qualities for guy to possess, right? This leads me to wonder what it would be like to be really really really good at one specialized skill -- like pitching or singing. And what feelings of ineptitude and failure my father would have had to feel to force me to be really really really good at that one thing.

But it turns out my father is an amazing, accomplished musician in his own right. Sure, he taught me a thing or two on guitar, but I'm no Clapton. I know the rice and beans when it comes to a fret board and I'm OK with that. He's OK with that.

But I'll never hurl a baseball at speeds of 100 mph and I'll never be an American Idol runner up. And I'm not entirely OK with that.

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This page contains a single entry by Kevin Allen published on July 4, 2008 10:38 PM.

Tampa Bay Raze: A farewell to Puffs was the previous entry in this blog.

I almost made a huge mistake is the next entry in this blog.

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