Any way you slice it, it's an exciting time to be a fan of the orange and black or the Dodger blue. For the first time since 2004, both teams have a legitimate shot at winning the division.
Considering the history and the rivalry, the summer of 2012 should be one to remember.
Don't worry fans, the two rivals still have 12 regular season matchups between them, games that will probably decide who wins the NL West.
Early in the year it looked like the Dodgers would run away with the division, but once again the Giants have clawed their way back, even grabbing the lead for a short time. So with three months to go it's anyone's game.
With the race for the postseason in a dead heat, here are nine reasons why the Giants are better than the Dodgers.
Surprisingly it's the Dodgers who have a better ERA than the Giants, so why give the advantage to the Giants you may ask?
Ted Lilly was phenomenal for the Dodgers, with a 5-1 record and an ERA of 3.14, before he got hurt. His replacement, Nathan Eovaldi, has been less than impressive, posting a 1-5 mark and 4.21 ERA.
Beside Chris Capuano and re-signing Cy Young winner Clayton Kershaw, who have posted ERAs of 2.91, the Dodgers pitching staff has been mediocre. Chad Billingsley is 4-9 and despite a wining record (6-5), Aaron Harang has a WHIP of 1.42.
One the other hand, the Giants staff has been very impressive with two pitchers also holding ERAs under 3.00. Matt Cain is putting together a Cy Young performance (9-3, 2.62 ERA), and who can forget his perfect game.
The journeyman who burst onto the scene last year is back at it again, pitching 15 quality starts in 16 appearances with a 2.36 ERA.
Barry Zito has also had a nice comeback season, and though he has been inconsistent at times, he still can win games.
That of course brings us to the elephant in the room—Tim Lincecum. He has been the worst pitcher in baseball this year, and maybe of all time. The Giants are actually 42-26 when Lincecum doesn't pitch.
Overall, despite Lincecum's problems, the Giants still have a better staff. With the new Big Three at the top, the orange and black have a good chance to win the division.
Both teams have suffered injuries this year, but it's been how the Giants have responded that has set them apart from the Dodgers.
For all intents and purposes, Matt Kemp went down on May 13. He did get five at-bats at the end of the month, but in reality the Dodgers have been without their star for two months.
At that point the Dodgers were 23-11 and held a six-game lead in the NL West. Since then, they are 24-29, scoring only 3.42 runs per game.
After the break, the Dodgers will start without speedster Dee Gordon and Andre Ethier, who have been the only productive hitters besides Kemp.
Even when Sandoval was out the team went 19-14.
Not only are the Giants healthier, but they know they can deal with a possible setback.
So neither team made the playoffs last year, but the Dodgers haven't been since 2009. For the past two seasons they have watched as the Giants and then the Arizona Diamondbacks won the division.
In 2012 the Giants are led by some of the same guys who got them to the title in 2010. Cain and Buster Posey have emerged as quiet leaders and are hungry to get back to the playoffs again.
Even though Zito and Sandoval didn't contribute much to the team's postseason run, both understand what is needed to win.
Kemp, Ethier and Kershaw have all been to the postseason, but that was three years ago and James Loney and Billingsley are the only key pieces left.
If it comes down to the final week, don't be surprised if the Giants come out on top, because they have been there before and know how to get it done.
The 2012 Giants have shown once again that you don't have to have a superstar to win. Granted, they did have four All-Stars and Cain no longer lives under the shadow of the best pitcher who no one knew about.
The Giants aren't perfect, in fact for a team that is only a half game out they are flawed. That being said, they have found their team identity in pitching and line-drive hitting and seem to be making the best of it.
When the Dodgers were winning, Kemp might as well have been hitting a 5.9 oz leather beach ball. The blue were riding high and they were the best team in baseball.
Unfortunately Kemp got hurt, and without their superstar, the Dodgers aren't the same. In one six-game stretch they were shut out five times, including three straight by the Giants.
The Giants don't need Pablo to homer or Melky Cabrera to leg out a triple every night, because they win as a team. It reminds us of 2010 as the orange and black came together for one magical run.
It's crazy to say, but the Giants actually are more of a threat on the base paths than the Dodgers. So Dee Gordon is out and Kemp has been out for two months, but the Giants are showing they're not the station to station team.
The Giants are second in the NL in triples and third in the league in stolen bases. Even though the team is taking advantage of the deep right-center field gap, their new offseason additions are putting pressure on opponents.
Angel Pagan has 15 SB, as does Gregor Blanco and Cabrera has 10. No, the Giants are not the 1985 St. Louis Cardinals, who were one of two teams to steal over 300 bases since 1912, but they have been more dynamic than their rivals.
Alright you can probably blame the Dodgers' lack of offense on the absence of Kemp, but that still doesn't change the fact that the Giants have the fifth-best batting average in the National League.
The Dodgers on the other hand rank ninth, with a .250 average and are 15th in slugging percentage (.364). Granted, the Giants haven't really been hitting for power either; both teams are hitting just 51 HR, but the Giants have been able to get hits.
The Giants ranked fifth in the NL in BABIP (.306) and and third in the league in strikeout percentage (17.7). They understand that hitting line drives and getting on base is more important than hitting balls into McCovey Cove, and the orange and black have done just that.
They are fourth in the NL in hits, with Cabrera leading the team and the league with 119. Although this hasn't always translated into runs, the Giants have been able to get on base and put some pressure on the opposing pitcher.
Whether it's because of injuries or Bruce Bochy's platoon system, the Giants have a legitimate bench for those dog days of summer.
No, the Giants don't have a guy who can crush a late-inning mistake to win a game, but with Nate Schierholtz as a defensive replacement and Joaquin Arias filling in at multiple positions, the Giants have some depth.
Don't forget about Hector Sanchez, who has caught Zito all this year, and added some production from the backup catcher position—.258 with 22 RBI is nothing to laugh at.
And now with Justin Christian up from the minors and hitting well 4-9, the Giants should have more production from their second team.
So the Giants are 12th in the league in runs, the Dodgers are 14th, and the two rivals rank 12th and 13th in RBI respectively. Case in point, both teams have had their struggles at the plate.
Unfortunately for the Dodgers, their struggles have happened in the last two months. In April and May they knocked 39 HR (12 by Kemp) to go with a .285 team average in May.
On May 22 they were 30-13 and were fourth in the league in runs scored. Since then, they are 16-27 and no one has score fewer runs (136) than the Dodgers.
Though the Giants struggled to find an offensive identity to start the season, with Blanco, Pagan and Cabrera in the outfield they now have a consistent lineup.
The Giants' lineup may not strike fear in opposing pitchers, but with three All-Stars chomping at the bit, the boys from the bay could be in for an offensive awakening.
This year, the Giants have been consistently above average, not great but good, and good enough to stay close to the Dodgers.
Their longest winning streak is four, and their longest losing streak is four.
The Dodgers on the other hand have been anything but consistent. At one point they were 30-13, then they lost the division lead. They have rattled off a six-game winning streak, but also lost seven in a row.
With the health of Kemp and Ethier still in question, it's hard to predict what the Dodgers will bring to the table. Yes, the pitching will be there, but will their bats come alive like they did in April and May?
At least from the Giants you know what to expect. It's probably going to be 2-1, 3-2, 4-3—Torture!