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Friday, October 29, 2010

If You Aren't Worried About the Giants Ability to Score Runs, You Aren't Really a Giants Fan

The Giants 20-run eruption in the first two games of the World Series has spawned a flurry of righteous San Franciscans to bombard the mainstream media comment boards and call-in shows with juvenile "I told you so" hysterics, claiming that the popular prediction by baseball pundits, that the Giants would struggle to score runs, is somehow evidence of ineptitude and "East Coast bias."  There are plenty of reasons to make such claims; however, this is not one of them.

I will point out that I was not among the multitude who published such a prediction, but only because I believe that it's so utterly obvious that it fails to qualify as meaningful analysis.  So-called Giants fans are objecting to tautological platitudes.  Really!?!  Is that worthy of your outrage?  The Giants offensive woes have been well-documented and continuous.  They haven't scored 700 runs in a season since 2006.  (The Rangers, as an alternative example, haven't failed to score 700 runs since 1995.)  This 20-run explosion is an outlier of extraordinary proportions.  Here's a few reasons why:

1.) It took the Giants seven previous postseason games to accumulated as many as twenty runs of offense.

2.) In a 162-game season, they scored twenty runs in a two-game stretch exactly three times.  In those games, the starting pitchers they were facing were guys like Chris Narveson, Manny Parra, and Homer Bailey.

3.) In 170 career starts for San Francisco, Matt Cain's Giants teammates have scored nine or more runs for him on only nine occasions (providing a partial explanation for how a guy with a 3.45 career ERA and a 1.22 WHIP is saddled with a losing record).

4.) The Giants scored 41 fewer runs than any other postseason team in 2010.

If you aren't worried about the Giants ability to score runs, either you haven't been paying attention or you're living in a state of oblivion.  The real Giants fans are, even with their two-game lead, living in anticipation of the spigot being shut off, perhaps permanently.  I heard several anxious utterances during both games to this effect: "Stop scoring, we're going to need some of these runs tomorrow."  This is, of course, a somewhat hilarious baseball superstition, but it indicates exactly how run-starved this team has been.  Unlike Texans, who have come to expect frequent firework displays, Giants fans can't even enjoy a blowout.  It's too unfamiliar.  It feels like a portent of doom.  

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

How true this was, and how sweet that it is over!
-SF Croc