The San Francisco Giants were not very fun to watch last year. If an alien had landed in McCovey Cove last year, taking out an unsuspecting canoe paddler, and the first thing it did was go to a Giants game, chances are it would’ve been perplexed as to why humans would be attending those games for entertainment. Perhaps it would’ve stayed for the garlic fries, though.
Nonetheless, this isn’t 2017. As William Faulkner once wrote, “The past is never dead, it’s not even past.” For about the first 10 games of 2018, it seemed that Faulkner’s wisdom was all too true as it pertained to the San Francisco Giants.
It seemed as if the sluggish offense and seeming inability to come through in the clutch that was a staple of the second half of 2016 and all of 2017 was going to transfer over to this year as well.
However, it is clear that these aren’t the 2017 Giants. This isn’t too surprising considering the fact that on paper this is a very different team from last year. Finally, new guys like Evan Longoria and Austin Jackson are starting to contribute and come through in the clutch as we hoped they would. Even though the Giants have suffered a bevy of injuries, they’ve still found ways to win and find themselves hovering around .500.
They’re getting back to doing the things that were instrumental in their championship runs. Namely, clutch hitting. Driving in runs with two outs has been huge in their recent success. While I love myself a good dinger, nothing pleases me more than a clutch 2-out hit that adds some runs to the board and really shifts the momentum of a game in their favor.
It’s also refreshing to feel that just because the Giants are losing late in the game doesn’t mean they’re destined to lose. Compare that with last year in which it seemed that if they were behind going into the ninth then there was no way they could pull it out.
Of course, the Giants will run into struggles as well. The bats will cool off, the timely hits won’t seem to come that often. The Dodgers will inevitably start to heat up. However, I think it’s safe to say that this team will be tolerable to watch for the majority of the 2018 campaign.