Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Road trip!

The 2000 Giants were 38-38 at the end of June. They then won 8 in a row on their way to a 19-8 July. They continued playing great baseball in August (19-10) and September (20-9) and wound up with the best record overall (97-65) and won the West by 11 games.

The 2010 Giants were 40-37 at the end of June. They then caught fire in July, racking up an ML-best 20-8 record to surge past the Rockies and Dodgers into 2nd place. I don't think it will take 97 wins to beat the Padres, but it may take another month of .700 ball to dislodge them from the top spot. What is interesting about 2000 is that there were three teams with better than .500 records: LA was 2nd at 86-76, AZ 3rd at 85-77, and CO 4th at 82-80. Even lowly SD won 76 games. This year's NL West just might have four .500+ clubs as well, but the separation among the top finishers will likely be a handful of games. Baseball Prospectus runs projections and computes updated post-season odds all season long. Right now the number-crunchers pick the Padres to finish 1st at 94-68 and the Giants to finish 2nd at 90-72. Our probability of winning the division stands at 21% and the Wild card 23%, for a 44% chance of making the post-season. There are actually three different simulations using different inputs, the best shows the Giants finishing 92-70, a game behind SD, with a 68% chance of making the playoffs. A 30-26 record the rest of the way would see the Giants finish 91-71. 30-26 is only .536 ball, something the Giants, barring injuries or other Terrible Acts of God, should be able to pull off.

Colorado and Atlanta should be a stiff test for the lads. Winning on the road was a problem earlier in the season, but they seem to have solved that little issue. Jonathan Sanchez takes the ball tonight.



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