It’s about time to revise those preseason World Series projections that favored the mediocre Los Angeles Dodgers, because the San Francisco Giants are the most dangerous team in MLB action. They continued to solidify that distinction in a win over the Cincinnati Reds on Thursday. This version of the orange and black is more talented than the squads that won championships in 2010 and 2012 because of their collective ability to blast game-changing home runs.
From “The Beast”, otherwise known as Michael Morse, to fifth outfielder Juan Perez, the Giants always seem to crush a four-bagger when they need it most. San Francisco leads all of baseball with a ridiculous total of 122 runs scored with two outs. They’re the best clutch hitting team in the league and don’t appear destined to slow down anytime soon.
After suffering an 8-3 loss to start a three-game set with the Reds, the Giants appeared vulnerable, especially defensively. They committed four errors in that contest and miserably failed to shut down electrifying outfielder Billy Hamilton, who literally ran wild in the Reds’ victory. The Giants bounced back the day after, notching a grind-it-out 3-2 win to increase their NL West lead to eight games over the Dodgers. San Francisco hasn’t lost back-to-back games since May 17, a stretch of nearly three weeks.
Since then, the Giants have registered a 12-4 mark. They bashed their way to another win on Thursday, defeating the Reds 6-1 . Five of the Giants’ runs were scored via the long ball. Morse went deep for the second straight game, reaching the upper deck in left field to initially give San Francisco a 2-1 edge. On a day where staff ace Madison Bumgarner was at his best, that was all the Giants needed. Slick-fielding shortstop Brandon Crawford added a three-run jack for insurance in the fourth inning to essentially put the game out of reach. He also recorded several dazzling plays on the left side of the infield to prevent the Reds from gaining any momentum.
Bumgarner continued his recent dominance after earning pitcher of the month honors for May. He recorded eight innings of one-run baseball, allowing just three hits with five strikeouts. Nobody can figure out the hard-throwing southpaw at the moment, just like nobody can touch the Giants. Cincinnati had won four straight games after earning the victory in the first game of this series. After dropping the final two games of the set, the Reds now have a losing record at home (13-14).
The Giants’ power surge at the plate is starting to turn some heads. They’ve bashed 68 home runs to rank fourth in all of baseball and second in the National League. They own the best road record in the league at 20-12 and are starting to pull away from the arch-rival Dodgers in the NL West. San Francisco is a legitimate World Series contender.