Giants tread in all too familiar waters

The San Francisco Giants looked like they were on track for another even-year magical run when they went into the All-Star Break on July 10th. At 57-33, they had the best record in all of baseball despite having key players such as fan favorite Hunter Pence and formidable reliever Sergio Romo missing close to all of the first half games.

Things were looking very promising for the team in orange and black as if they were proudly wearing the colors of post-season October and Halloween itself. However, as most fans realize, the Giants never like to make things this easy. In 2010, they needed just one win going into the final series of the season and did not clinch their playoff birth until the last day of the season. In 2012, despite an 8 game lead on their division to make it to the playoffs, they ended up having to win three straight against the Cincinnati Reds in the first round to make it the National League Championship.

In 2014, they were never expected to reach the postseason, but somehow the Giants never fail to surprise the world of baseball. That is why it should come to no surprise that they have managed to squander their first half dominance and now find themselves struggling to manage wins altogether.

Most recently being shutout by Chad Bettis — one of the leagues worst pitchers — in one of the leagues most offensive friendly parks, it doesn’t look like they are turning things around any time soon. The four-game series against the Chicago Cubs during Labor Day weekend should have been a good gauge of how they currently fare against a true World Series contender. They managed to put up a good fight, only being outscored 12-10 in the series, but still ended up losing three of four, most notably blowing a 9th inning lead in the last game to lose in the 13th inning.

It could have almost been seen as an omen of what was to come after being swept by the San Diego Padres, one of the worst teams in the league, following the All-Star Game. It has been a constant grind for the players. But right when it starts to look like they will return to the team the league saw in the first half, they blew a lead in the ninth inning and get shutout by Bettis the very next day. So how exactly will the Giants turn things around?

We have seen management make attempts to move players such as Matt Duffy and top prospects to acquire an All-Star infielder, an established starting pitcher, and an above-average relief pitcher in terms of the type of bullpen the Giants have. Despite these moves, the Giants seem to be stuck in quicksand, the more they attempt to get out, the more they sink. The Giants have already lost 32 of the 49 games played in the second half this season. The Giants have literally gone from the best baseball team in the league to the worst. But why?

The bats haven’t been giving the pitching support they need, and when they do, the bullpen finds a way to blow it. There have been few bright spots in the second half for the team to build momentum on, but they are not done yet.

This wouldn’t be the first time the Giants have been counted out. For the optimistic, they still have the wild card spot by half a game and are only five games behind the Dodgers in their division with four weeks left.

For the pessimistic, well there are four weeks left, and that means there are still a lot more games to disappoint Giant fans.