We are entering the eight season of this decade. Since it’s the year 2017 this is an odd year, does that mean the San Francisco Giants will not make the playoffs? So far since this decade began the Giants made the playoffs in 2010, 2012, 2014, and 2016. On three of those four years the bay area team won the World Series. Last season was even streak was broken after the Giants were beaten by the Cubs in the NLDS. San Francisco was able to make the wildcard and defeated the New York Mets in a one game playoff.
The 2017 San Francisco Giants looks to be healthy and ready to compete with the Dodgers in the NL West. Last year’s team made it to the all-star break with the best record in baseball. The second half of the season seemed to go downhill as they had to do deal with a few injuries and the inability of the bullpen to close out games. In the off season the Giants went out and got a closer, they signed free agent Mark Melancon. Melancon had a great 2016 posting 47 saves while playing for the Pittsburgh Pirates and Washington Nationals. The new Giants closer also posted a 1.64 ERA in 75 appearances. Melancon has 168 saves and has struck out 407 batters over his career.
The Giants lineup will look almost the same minus Gregor Blanco and Angel Pagan.
Giants Key Players
C. Buster Posey : A four time all-star, 3 time World Series rings, and the NL MVP in 2012. Posey is a career .307 hitter and is the biggest piece of the Giants lineup.
1B. Brandon Belt : Entering his 7th season with the Giants. Made the All-Star team for the first time last year. Belt has won two World Series titles. He could be called a double machine as he produced 33 of them in 2016 which led the team. Belts nickname on the team is the baby giraffe.
Hunter Pence: Entering his 5th season with San Francisco, a three time all-star, two World Titles, spent some of 2016 on the DL but was a spark for the offense to spring his team to the post season. Pence is a career .321 hitter with almost 800 RBI’s.
Brandon Crawford: Had his best year in 2016 batting .275. Crawford has always been a threat in the field winning the gold glove two years straight. Brandon came up with some big hits last season driving in 84 runs which was best on the team.Crawford also had a 7 hit game last season in Miami, only 5 other players in Major League history has completed this task.
The pitching for the Giants looks to be stacked from top to bottom. The 2014 World Series MVP Madison Bumgarner will once again be the teams ace, Johnny Cueto will be right behind him to provide a very tough one two punch. New comer Matt Moore, and returning starters Jeff Samardzija, veteran Matt Cain should fill in the rest of the starting staff. As usual the Giants could have one of the best starting five in baseball.
The Giants also invited some veterans to spring training such as Jimmy Rollins, Aaron Hill and former Giant and World Series Champion Mike Morse. The only question for manager Bruce Bochy is the bullpen. Although they do have Hunter Strickland and George Kontos returning who both had decent seasons both ran into some rough spots the 2nd half of the year. Can the Giants win the World Series for the fourth time this decade? It should be a good battle between the Dodgers and Giants for the NL West.