The San Francisco Giants didn’t win the World Series two years ago because they were loaded with talent at every position. While the pitching was strong, the offense relied on career years from unlikely sources, a lucky waiver-wire pickup and the leadership of a rookie catcher.
That’s not exactly the typical championship formula.
The Giants were also beneficiaries from the complete lack of expectations, as their success caught the baseball world by surprise. This year, as they enter the final three weeks of the season with a seven-game lead on the Dodgers, they aren’t sneaking up on anybody. And their fans, having recently savored ultimate victory, want more.
While they appear to be running away with the division, the Giants are not without problems: struggling stars, fill-ins at key positions, diamonds in the rough losing their sparkle.
So, there’s reason to believe San Francisco’s success won't carry into the playoffs. To prove otherwise, however, some Giants have to snap out of their funks, while others have to keep up their solid play.
Here are seven Giants (well, technically, eight) who have something to prove down the stretch.