The Giants have always been the The Greatest Second-Place Team in Baseball. The franchise has been the losing team in the World Series 12 times! "Always the bridesmaid and never the bride." San Francisco fans are well aware of the 1965-1969 teams that finished second every season despite averaging 91+ wins and being stocked with HOFers. Those guys had already lost in the Series in 1962, and lost in the playoffs at the end of the run in 1971 to the eventual World Champs. The Will Clark Giants lost to the pennant winners in 1987, and lost the Series in 1989. The 1993 and 1994 teams finished 2nd. The Barry Bonds Giants lost in the playoffs in 1997 to the eventual World Champs, and finished 2nd in 1998 (and lost a Wild-Card qualifier) and in 1999. In 2000 they lost in the playoffs to the eventual pennant winners, lost the division (finishing 2nd) in 2001 to the eventual World Champs, lost the Series in 2002 (after finishing 2nd in the division), and lost in the playoffs in 2003 to the eventual World Champs. They finished 2nd in 2004. It was an organizational curse to be "second-best." This organization--one of the oldest--has the most wins of any baseball team in history and the most wins of any professional sports franchise in North America. The San Francisco club, however, had an empty spot on the organizational mantle. The Big Prize kept eluding them.
No more. The Commissioner's Trophy resides in San Francisco after an extraordinary 2010 season. The Giants won the NL West, the NLCS, the NL pennant, and the World Series. In this sport, that means you get to puff out your chest and proclaim that you are the best.
The San Francisco Giants are the best team in baseball.
Savor every minute of it, my friends.
p.s. I have my new 2010 World Series Champions t-shirt and I'm wearing it to work today. Get yours soon!