49: 1995, 67-77, 4th NL West
1995 was nearly played with replacement players, but the strike, which wiped out the World Series the year prior, finally ended on April 2. As a result, the real players played a very quick Spring Training before starting the regular season on April 23 in Atlanta.
Opening Day was not the celebration it usually was. In fact, it was revenge for the fans. It was the day angry fans, who felt betrayed by their heroes, were able to air out their grievances at them. Tom Glavine, who started against the Giants on Opening Day, was booed by his own fans in Atlanta for being the main player representative during the strike. This was despite all he did for the Braves earlier in the decade.
Things still weren’t entirely back to normal. The umpires in both leagues were all locked out, and the games were umpired by scabs. The Giants lost both of their games in Atlanta, and the Home Opener against the Marlins only drew 26,403 fans. The new fans, and the excitement over the Giants being saved just two years prior were gone. Instead, 26,403 angry die-hards, as well as several locked-out National League umpires filled the stands on a gloomy grey day at Candlestick.
The real umpires returned to work a week later, but not before an exciting 15-inning win the Giants had against the Dodgers in Hideo Nomo‘s debut on May 2. The Giants played fairly decent ball over the first month and a half of the season, as they went 23-17 in their first 40 games, but they stumbled through a 15-31 stretch, which like 1994, put them quite a bit under .500 in July. However, also like 1994, the National League West was weak, which allowed the Giants to contend.
No matter how well the Giants played, because of the strike, it was back to old times at the Stick, where fans didn’t show up. The Giants only drew over 30,000 fans five times in 1995. Compared to the crowds that came to The Stick in the mid-1970s, that was actually pretty good, but compared to the 39 crowds they drew over 30,000 in 1993, as well as the 24 crowds of over 30,000 in 1994, it was pretty devastating
On Sept. 11, the Giants were 61-64, in third place and just five and a half games back with 19 games to go in their abbreviated 144-game schedule. Unfortunately, the Giants went 6-13 in the final three weeks to go 67-77 on the season, and that was it.
1995 wasn’t the worst, but considering the lack of fan support, following a time that it was its highest, 1995 really wasn’t a year to remember. But hey; at least the season was played to its conclusion.