FanGraphs Baseball


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  1. It felt like the torture of 2010 all over again. It’s true that the wins are what count, but I’d feel a whole lot better if they weren’t so ugly.

    Comment by joe bananas — October 10, 2012 @ 11:30 am

  2. Just a mater of time before they explode for three runs.

    Comment by Menthol — October 10, 2012 @ 11:32 am

  3. Great article, Jeff. It never occurred to me — or most anyone, I imagine — that yesterday’s win could’ve been historic in any meaningful sense. Teams win games like this during the regular season all the time (or, at least, on occasion).

    The Giants had better start swinging the bats, though, because they’re not going to be able to rely on errors by Scott Rolen and passed balls by Ryan Hanigan if they’re going to win the series. This isn’t Little League, where you can win many games by getting just 3-4 hits in a game.

    Comment by chuckb — October 10, 2012 @ 11:38 am

  4. Of the 4 teams immediately below them on this list, 3 won the World Series including the 2010 Giants.

    I think they’ll take the win, hope to get lucky with the good version of Zito tonight, and then hope for a Matt Cain vs some Red pitcher working on short rest matchup Thursday. Giants remain the longest of long shots, but not quite dead yet.

    Comment by Candlestick — October 10, 2012 @ 11:42 am

  5. SFG:
    28-6 vs HOU/COLO/CUBS
    66-62 vs everyone else

    They’re barely a good team. The unbalanced schedule is still the worst thing about the game.

    Comment by PL — October 10, 2012 @ 11:52 am

  6. Latos will pitch game 5 on full rest if needed.

    Comment by RobL — October 10, 2012 @ 12:03 pm

  7. Do you know what selection bias is?

    Comment by Justin — October 10, 2012 @ 12:09 pm

  8. The Reds got to play those three teams more than the Giants, and went 27-10. Everyone beats up on the bad teams.
    Yeah, the unbalanced schedule isn’t the greatest, but any single game is a crapshoot. Detroit went 1-5 against Seattle. Washington went 3-4 against Colorado. This isn’t the NBA where the bad teams only win 10% of their games.

    Comment by Jack — October 10, 2012 @ 12:12 pm

  9. Let’s turn that argument around. HOU/COL/CHC combined to go 6-28 against the Giants (.214) and 184-280 (.397) against everybody else, including each other. Clearly the Giants were doing something right.

    Good teams build up their records, generally speaking, by beating up on bad teams and playing around .500 against other good teams. There’s nothing unique about the Giants in that respect.

    Comment by Ian R. — October 10, 2012 @ 12:16 pm

  10. Do you know who Gregor Blanco is? Do you know who Marco Scutaro is? The two guys that the Giants have bear no resemblance to these two people

    Comment by Tony Fernandez — October 10, 2012 @ 12:18 pm

  11. Whoops, numbers are slightly off. Those three teams actually went 174-278 (.385) against non-Giants competition. Point still stands.

    Comment by Ian R. — October 10, 2012 @ 12:23 pm

  12. The 1997 Indians on that list really surprised me. I thought that team was pretty stacked with some very good hitters. Of course they were facing Mussina in his prime. They also struck out 14 times in 11 innings that day as well.

    Comment by Ron — October 10, 2012 @ 2:04 pm

  13. Very happy to see that Yankees game on the list — that was the infamous “flip play” game. That clip of Jeremy Giambi not sliding gets played over and over again, but people forget why it was such a huge play — the Yankees won that game 1-0 on a solo homer in the fifth by Posada, and the only other baserunners they had were Bernie Williams on a walk and Shane Spencer on a single.

    That game had me on the edge of my seat the entire time, and I screamed like a little girl when the flip happened. Good times.

    Comment by Jim — October 10, 2012 @ 2:53 pm

  14. boo!

    Comment by Delirium Nocturnum — October 10, 2012 @ 3:04 pm

  15. See, that didn’t take too long.

    Comment by Cass — October 10, 2012 @ 5:27 pm

  16. Another interesting fact, following up what Candlestick posted: with the exception of the ’81 Brewers, all of those teams have at least made it to the World Series. Crummy offense in playoffs = likely World Series appearance!

    Comment by somechick — October 11, 2012 @ 4:23 am

  17. That Scott Rolen needs to learn defense!

    Comment by Marcus — October 11, 2012 @ 5:24 am

  18. Was Game 4 good enough for you?

    Comment by obsessivegiantscompulsive — October 11, 2012 @ 11:24 am

  19. I think we all can play this game easily. Here’s another:

    Reds were 57-29 against under .500 teams
    Giants were 50-26, meaning the Reds had 10 more games against losing teams than the Giants.

    They were basically even against better than .500 teams, Reds 40-36 and Giants 44-42.

    Comment by obsessivegiantscompulsive — October 11, 2012 @ 11:29 am

  20. Another angle:

    Giants strength of schedule was -0.2, 12th in the league (per, but Reds was -0.3, 16th in the league, meaning that they had the easiest schedule.

    Comment by obsessivegiantscompulsive — October 11, 2012 @ 12:13 pm

  21. This is incredible, but not too surprising either, as a Giants fan.

    My research shows that an important factor in winning in the post-season is getting quality starts from your starters. Of course, that’s obviously true on the surface, but I researched the past four playoff seasons using Shandler’s PQS methodology and when a team gets a dominant quality start (DOM start in his nomenclature), teams had a .686 winning percentage, and taking out games where both pitchers had a dominant game, the team had a .824 winning percentage.

    And just avoiding disaster starts is important. When a team had a better pitched game, as categorized by the PQS methodology (DOM, DIS, other), that team had a .817 winning percentage.

    The Giants, as a team, has been compiling great seasons the past few seasons, and that gives them an advantage in the playoffs. The best pitchers have DOM% of 50%+ and the Giants rotation TOGETHER is above 50% because Lincecum, Cain, Bumgarner, and Vogelsong were all over 50%, in fact, Cain, Bumgarner, and Vogelsong were above 60%.

    Getting so many quality starts, combined with an offense that has sputtered a lot (though not as much lately), it is not surprising that the team is on this list twice, in fact, I’m surprised there weren’t more, are they in the top 20? I recall a lot of iffy offensive games versus the Braves in 2010.

    Comment by obsessivegiantscompulsive — October 11, 2012 @ 12:35 pm

  22. More impressive than the low wOBA, I think, is that they won while still striking out against Jonathan Broxton three times.

    Comment by Phrozen — October 11, 2012 @ 1:55 pm

  23. NLDS Game 3 was the Jack Morris of baseball games.

    Comment by jct — January 10, 2013 @ 6:50 pm

  24. I continuously love remembering this post after the Giants won the World Series. If I remember correctly, this was also the game of “the speech” by Hunter Pence. He inspired them to win but apparently not to hit.

    Comment by Ray — April 5, 2013 @ 4:50 pm

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