The San Francisco Giants are in the closing weeks of a highly disappointing 2013 season. At 56-69, the defending World Series champions are effectively out of playoff contention—and possibly a winning record.
And yet, the battered G-men can still do some damage.
Yep, it's time to play the role of spoiler for teams still vying for a spot in the playoffs, and division leaders looking to either clinch a division title or end the regular season on a hot streak.
In terms of the latter, the Giants can thwart the steady forward momentum of both the Pittsburgh Pirates and, more sweetly, the Los Angeles Dodgers.
With the wild card race approaching the final laps, the Giants represent prime obstacles for the playoff-hopeful Arizona Diamondbacks and Washington Nationals.
The Nationals have undergone similar struggles to the Giants in 2013. A mere season ago, these teams were playing in respective Game 5's of the NLDS. Now, the Giants are out of the hunt and the Nationals (61-64) are barely afloat. (talk about pitching, under-performing sophomores, injuries).
Still, if the Nats can pull off a late-minute surge, the postseason is not entirely out of their grasp.