San Francisco Giants: Just Call Them Champions … Again


In recent history, the San Francisco Giants have been labeled as misfits, underdogs, warriors, and even cockroaches. The best label of them all though is World Series champions, a title that the San Francisco Giants have donned for three times in the past five years.

The 2014 World Series was labeled as “Dynasty vs. Destiny” prior to the start of the series. The Kansas City Royals’ miraculous postseason run surely suggested that the they were destined to win the 2014 World Series. However, “dynasty” ultimately beat out “destiny,” as the Giants celebrated their 2014 World Series title at Kauffman Stadium last week.

After the wildly entertaining Game Seven, questions arose about the dynastic qualities of these Giants. Three championships in five years is incredibly impressive in any sport and worthy of the “dynasty” title.

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The Giants’ 2014 postseason run was almost too perfect. It was like it was out of a storybook. It felt as if this Giants team, not the Royals, was actually the team that was destined to win the World Series this season, as seen in certain key moments throughout the 2014 postseason.

The Giants faced improbable odds throughout the playoffs, starting with their Wild Card Game against the Pittsburgh Pirates on the road. The Giants entered this game as the underdogs, but they ultimately won the game 8-0.

The next key moment was when the Giants beat the Washington Nationals in the 18-inning Game Two of the NLDS. Once they won that mental and physical battle, the Giants significantly increased their odds to win the World Series, despite what some MLB analysts said.

The next key moment was Travis Ishikawa‘s three-run home run in Game Five of the NLCS against the St. Louis Cardinals. It wasn’t Buster Posey that secured the National League pennant for the Giants. It wasn’t Pablo Sandoval or Hunter Pence that sent the Giants to the World Series. It was Ishikawa, a 2010 postseason hero, that provided the Giants with the storybook ending to the NLCS.

Lastly, there were several important moments throughout the World Series, but losing Game 6 in Kansas City 10-0 was a key moment.

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All the odds were against the Giants in Game 7 after that loss, which is just how the Giants like it. They like playing with an underdog mentality, because it forces them to play more like a team. It obviously would’ve been nice for fans if the Giants had won in Game Six, but winning the World Series in Game Seven was much more fulfilling, given their tough loss in Game Six.

The Giants were the 10th-seeded team entering the 2014 postseason. They weren’t necessarily the best team on paper heading into the postseason. In fact, they weren’t even close, especially without key players  and previous postseason stars such as Angel Pagan, Marco Scutaro, and Matt Cain.

However, the Giants discovered a new postseason hero: Madison Bumgarner.

Bumgarner set all kinds of records throughout this 2014 postseason, and he proved that he is one of the best postseason pitchers ever. Yes, Bumgarner was absolutely incredible throughout the postseason, especially in the World Series. He was a significant reason why the Giants won the World Series.

However, he’s not the only reason why the Giants won, as some people have made it seem.

The Giants don’t get to the postseason without significant contributions from Jake Peavy, Tim Hudson, Joe Panik, and others. The Giants don’t win the World Series without Brandon Belt, Gregor Blanco, Ishikawa, Sandoval, Pence, and others.

Oct 29, 2014; Kansas City, MO, USA; San Francisco Giants players from left Madison Bumgarner , Ryan Vogelsong , Michael Morse and Buster Posey pose with the Commissioners Trophy after game seven of the 2014 World Series against the Kansas City Royals at Kauffman Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports

The Giants kept on winning throughout the postseason due to their winning formula of defying the odds, receiving clutch contributions from some unexpected heroes, and using their experience to their advantage.

The Giants possess three qualities that contribute to their winning formula and allow them to succeed at the highest level: confidence, teamwork, and their “never say die” attitude.

This Giants team is confident as a unit and confident in each other’s abilities. The Giants didn’t win the NL West, but they knew that as long as they made it into the playoffs, they could win the World Series again. No one else might’ve thought that, but they believed in themselves.

Their teamwork is fueled by their deep respect and trust in each other. If Posey, Sandoval, or Pence is struggling, someone else will step up. Pagan, Cain, Scutaro, Belt, Michael Morse, and others all suffered injuries throughout the season, but other players stepped up, even unsung heroes such as Panik, Ishikawa, Yusmeiro Petit, Juan Perez, Matt Duffy, and Andrew Susac.

The Giants’ team chemistry is unmatched for several reasons. These Giants players are genuinely good people, they have no egos, and they truly care for each other.

The Giants’ teamwork and team chemistry is also enhanced by each player’s “never say die” attitude. Several Giants players, such as Petit, Ryan Vogelsong, Santiago Casilla, Jeremy Affeldt, etc, overcame the odds themselves to get to where they are today. The Giants enjoy taking on tough obstacles, and they know how to overcome adversity.

No matter how big a lead is, the Giants never feel they are out of a game. They have staged several comebacks throughout the 2014 season and the postseason, and their teamwork and “never say die” attitude propels them to greatness.

Whether it’s even year magic or champion blood, the Giants are World Series champions. Together. Again.