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The irony, of course, is that the Giants have been willing to spend massive sums of money on bad players...But they can't make an acceptable offer to Lincecum.
If you wanted to know how long a 20-year-old man was going to live, you would look at men who were alive at age 20. You would not look at men who lived long lives and conclude that they were a representative sample of 20-year-olds.
Let's say we wanted to predict when a man would die. Would we only look at men who died after age 80?
Colin makes the most important point here - if this method has no predictive value, then it's not the right method.
Incidentally, I wonder what result J.C. would have found if he had included minor-league statistics and translated them to the majors. Probably that players peak at 27.