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Can the Suddenly Surging SF Giants Pull Off the Improbable and Win the NL Pennant at 750/1 Odds?

San Francisco Giants closer Will Smith fist pumps
National League All-Star closer Will Smith and the San Francisco Giants have won seven of 10 and saw their NL pennant odds drop to 750-1. Poto by: San Francisco Giants Twiter [https://twitter.com/SFGiants]
  • The San Francisco Giants posted a 7-3 record in the last 10 games before the MLB All-Star break
  • At 41-48, they are just 5.5 games out of a National League Wild-Card position
  • The Giants open the second half on the road against one of the teams they’re chasing, the Milwaukee Brewers

First off, let’s keep it real – no matter how hot they get, the San Francisco Giants won’t be challenging for the National League West Division title. The Giants trail the division-leading Los Angeles Dodgers by 17.5 games. That’s a gap they won’t be closing.

However, the Giants went 7-3 leading up the All-Star break and, even though they still sit at 41-48 overall, are just 5.5 games out of a Wild-Card position in the National League. Bovada still lists the Giants as +75000 in their NL Pennant odds.

Odds to Win 2019 NL Pennant

Team 2019 NL Pennant Odds at Bovada
Los Angeles Dodgers +110
Atlanta Braves +300
Chicago Cubs +900
Milwaukee Brewers +1200
Philadelphia Phillies +1200
Washington Nationals +1200
St. Louis Cardinals +2000
Colorado Rockies +3000
Cincinnati Reds +3500
Pittsburgh Pirates +4500
San Diego Padres +4500
Arizona Diamondbacks +5000
New York Mets +12500
San Francisco Giants +75000
Miami Marlins +200000

*Odds taken on 07/09/19

The Giants have reached (and won) the World Series three times in the last decade: 2010, 2012 and 2014.

Bats Heating Up

The hitting of the Giants certainly wasn’t a San Francisco treat for much of the first half of the season. They languished at or near bottom of all major offensive categories. There was very little middle-of-the-order production.

Lately, though, there’s been signs of life.  They averaged 7.6 runs per game while going 6-1 in their last seven. Third baseman Evan Longoria is hitting .429 (9-for-21) over the last six games, clouting five homers and seven extra-base hits.

Left-fielder Alex Dickerson is batting .362 with four homers and slashing .444/.782/1.232 in 16 games since he was called up from the minor leagues.

Is A Bum Deal In The Works?

Giants president of baseball operations Farhan Zaidi met with the local media shortly before the All-Star break and declined to commit to whether his team would be buyers or sellers before the July 31 MLB trade deadline.

There is definite interest in left-handed starting pitcher and 2014 World Series MVP Madison Bumgarner. Pacing a stellar bullpen, All-Star closer Will Smith is 23-for-23 in save situations.A free agent at season’s end, he’d be a coveted addition to any postseason contender.

It Would Be a Giants Leap

We’re a little over a week away from the 50th anniversary of the first moon landing and Neil Armstrong’s famous “one giant leap” quote. While the Giants leaping back into the playoff picture might not be on par with that achievement, it’s somewhat remarkable.

It’s also perplexing. The Giants don’t have a deep farm system. They’re still on pace for their third successive losing season, regardless of the recent uptick.

They need to retool and forget the playoffs. Sure, they’re only 5.5 games out, but there are eight teams blocking their path to that spot.

So in reality, the Giants don’t only need to play 5.5 games better than the Phillies (who currently occupy the second Wild Card) over the final 73 games of the season. They also need to play 5 games better than the Brewers, 4 games better than the Diamondbacks, 3.5 games better than the Padres and Cardinals, 3 games better than the Rockies and Pirates, and 1.5 games better than the Reds.

Even if they manage that enormous feat, it only gets them into the postseason. From there, they would still have to win the Wild-Card game, take down the Dodgers in the NLDS, and win another best-of-seven in the NLCS.

The Giants would be foolish to hang on to their vets and try to make a run. Almost as foolish as you’d be to wager on them winning the NL pennant.

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