5 Biggest Surprises For San Francisco Giants Through First Half of 2014 Season

San Francisco Giants: 5 Biggest Surprises Through First Half of Season

Brandon Belt San Francisco Giants
Getty Images

There isn't much the San Francisco Giants have and, well, have not accomplished in the 2014 MLB season. San Francisco has both seen the flashy hope of another World Series triumph and the sad reality of another rock-bottom finish. Nothing truly surprises diehard Giants fans anymore, but that doesn't change the fact that San Francisco still has a shot at glory if it can only hang onto stringy Golden Gate cords vibrating at every end.

5. The Giants Choked a Stranglehold on the Dodgers

Angel Pagan San Francisco Giants
Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

5. The Giants Choked a Stranglehold on the Dodgers

Angel Pagan San Francisco Giants
Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

At 42-21, the Giants didn't just strap on a gnarly 9.5-game edge over the arch-rival Los Angeles Dodgers in the NL West. The orange and black held a stranglehold on baseball. ESPN, the Mothership of East Coast bias, had dubbed the Giants the most unbeatable team in MLB action. The West was theirs. The Sweet Spot blog and the whole deal said it was over. And then June happened, and the Giants came crashing into the gutting crater they dug. BOOM!

4. Tim Lincecum Is Back

Tim Lincecum San Francisco Giants
Getty Images

4. Tim Lincecum Is Back

Tim Lincecum San Francisco Giants
Getty Images

The two-time Cy Young Award winner has officially joined Hall-of-Famer Sandy Koufax as the second pitcher ever to win the famed trophy twice while also tossing two no-hitters and earning two World Series rings. Lincecum has been the lone bright spot for the Giants as of late, nearly hurling back-to-back shutouts. The "Freak" has now posted two starts of eight-plus shutout innings for the first time in his career.

3. Jean Machi Has Nasty Stuff

Jean Machi San Francisco Giants
Ed Szczepanski-USA TODAY Sports

3. Jean Machi Has Nasty Stuff

Jean Machi San Francisco Giants
Ed Szczepanski-USA TODAY Sports

Machi was never guaranteed a roster spot when Spring Training began, but his nasty fork-ball earned him a slot on the Giants' Opening Day 25-man roster. Machi hasn't made manager Bruce Bochy's decision look foolish to date. The career minor leaguer was among the bottom tier in allowing inherited runners to score in 2013, but he has registered All-Star caliber numbers in middle-inning relief throughout 2014.

2. Sergio Romo Can't Close

Sergio Romo San Francisco Giants
Getty Images

2. Sergio Romo Can't Close

Sergio Romo San Francisco Giants
Getty Images

The dude who made Triple-Crown winner Miguel Cabrera look silly on a season-ending and championship-clinching 89 mph fastball in 2012 has completely evaporated into a low-grade late-inning reliever. Romo is among the league leaders in saves, but he has flip-flopped an unhittable no-dot slider into batting practice belt-high hangers out of an old-school pitching machine. The Giants have big-time problems in the 'pen.

1. Angel Pagan Will Never Stay Healthy

Angel Pagan San Francisco Giants
Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports

1. Angel Pagan Will Never Stay Healthy

Angel Pagan San Francisco Giants
Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports

General manager Brian Sabean knew what the Giants were getting upon making a seemingly unfair trade before the 2012 season. Now, San Francisco is engaging the reality of Pagan. The Mets were fed up with Pagan's inability to stay healthy. It didn't matter how good he was. The Giants championed the benefits of his best season ever in a 2012 title effort but stupidly re-signed him to a four-year deal, one of which they won't overcome in 2014.

San Francisco Giants: 5 Biggest Surprises Through First Half of Season

Brandon Belt San Francisco Giants
Getty Images

There isn't much the San Francisco Giants have and, well, have not accomplished in the 2014 MLB season. San Francisco has both seen the flashy hope of another World Series triumph and the sad reality of another rock-bottom finish. Nothing truly surprises diehard Giants fans anymore, but that doesn't change the fact that San Francisco still has a shot at glory if it can only hang onto stringy Golden Gate cords vibrating at every end.

5. The Giants Choked a Stranglehold on the Dodgers

Angel Pagan San Francisco Giants
Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

5. The Giants Choked a Stranglehold on the Dodgers

Angel Pagan San Francisco Giants
Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

At 42-21, the Giants didn't just strap on a gnarly 9.5-game edge over the arch-rival Los Angeles Dodgers in the NL West. The orange and black held a stranglehold on baseball. ESPN, the Mothership of East Coast bias, had dubbed the Giants the most unbeatable team in MLB action. The West was theirs. The Sweet Spot blog and the whole deal said it was over. And then June happened, and the Giants came crashing into the gutting crater they dug. BOOM!

4. Tim Lincecum Is Back

Tim Lincecum San Francisco Giants
Getty Images

4. Tim Lincecum Is Back

Tim Lincecum San Francisco Giants
Getty Images

The two-time Cy Young Award winner has officially joined Hall-of-Famer Sandy Koufax as the second pitcher ever to win the famed trophy twice while also tossing two no-hitters and earning two World Series rings. Lincecum has been the lone bright spot for the Giants as of late, nearly hurling back-to-back shutouts. The "Freak" has now posted two starts of eight-plus shutout innings for the first time in his career.

3. Jean Machi Has Nasty Stuff

Jean Machi San Francisco Giants
Ed Szczepanski-USA TODAY Sports

3. Jean Machi Has Nasty Stuff

Jean Machi San Francisco Giants
Ed Szczepanski-USA TODAY Sports

Machi was never guaranteed a roster spot when Spring Training began, but his nasty fork-ball earned him a slot on the Giants' Opening Day 25-man roster. Machi hasn't made manager Bruce Bochy's decision look foolish to date. The career minor leaguer was among the bottom tier in allowing inherited runners to score in 2013, but he has registered All-Star caliber numbers in middle-inning relief throughout 2014.

2. Sergio Romo Can't Close

Sergio Romo San Francisco Giants
Getty Images

2. Sergio Romo Can't Close

Sergio Romo San Francisco Giants
Getty Images

The dude who made Triple-Crown winner Miguel Cabrera look silly on a season-ending and championship-clinching 89 mph fastball in 2012 has completely evaporated into a low-grade late-inning reliever. Romo is among the league leaders in saves, but he has flip-flopped an unhittable no-dot slider into batting practice belt-high hangers out of an old-school pitching machine. The Giants have big-time problems in the 'pen.

1. Angel Pagan Will Never Stay Healthy

Angel Pagan San Francisco Giants
Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports

1. Angel Pagan Will Never Stay Healthy

Angel Pagan San Francisco Giants
Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports

General manager Brian Sabean knew what the Giants were getting upon making a seemingly unfair trade before the 2012 season. Now, San Francisco is engaging the reality of Pagan. The Mets were fed up with Pagan's inability to stay healthy. It didn't matter how good he was. The Giants championed the benefits of his best season ever in a 2012 title effort but stupidly re-signed him to a four-year deal, one of which they won't overcome in 2014.

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