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Matt Duffy details what sets San Francisco Giants apart in retrospective

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They may not be a band of misfits any longer, but whether or not they make it to the playoffs this year, you can rest assured that the 2015 Giants are a band of brothers.

Matt Duffy made that clear in a revealing retrospective for the Players Tribune on Monday, wherein he proved something we’ve always known (and others are beginning to recognize) about the Orange and Black. It’s something that goes underappreciated in American professional sports—something that can’t be statistically measured, yet translates to results that can be seen on the field.

I’m talking, of course, about team chemistry.

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In the post-Bonds era, this is something the organization has coveted, drafting smart and retooling the team organically. In addition to cutting costs, it’s helped fuel perhaps the most unlikely dynasty in baseball history—beginning with the rag-tag 2010 collective and going up to the group Duffy heaped praise on.

Despite being the “new kid in class” when he was a called up in 2014—a complete stranger with no experience in big league camp—Duffy was welcomed to the Giants with open arms. No one was more welcoming than clubhouse king Hunter Pence, who uttered three words that would stay with the third baseman forever: “We need you.”

Duffy went on to detail lessons learned from franchise face Buster Posey, infield-mate Brandon Crawford and, most importantly, veteran castoff Casey McGehee. McGehee caught a lot of flak as the team’s struggling third baseman this season, but he never let his own issues get in the way of mentoring his heir apparent—even when it looked like his days were numbered.

This is the same approach Duffy and the rest of the gang has taken with Kelby Tomlinson, a pattern that has bred success under the bright lights for players that may not have otherwise found their way. It may seem like an obvious approach for any burgeoning organization, but it’s one often lost amidst personal accolades and million-dollar deals.

Postseason or no postseason, this is something that won’t change within a clubhouse that welcomes its new brothers with open arms. As Duffy himself penned: “That’s just the Giants’ way.”

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