There’s a lot of early excitement in San Francisco surrounding the Giants. It’s far too early to start wondering what October could have in store for the team, but it’s fun to imagine a season in which this top-level playing continues. Eight games into the season, the team is on top of the National League standings. The Giants are also leading the league in home runs with 12, and a whopping 47 runs. The pitching, so far, is reminiscent of the performance that led us to two recent World Series titles.
Newcomer to the team, right-handed pitcher Tim Hudson is already turning heads and getting cheers from fans. His recent win over the Diamondbacks was impressive for a number of reasons. First, he played eight innings with only seven runs, giving the offense plenty of opportunity to take a lead. But the win also gives him the most career wins of any active pitchers in major league baseball. It looks like the two-year, $23 million deal that brought him to the Bay for two years. Some were worried about the 38-year-old player, who was recovering this winter from a broken leg and torn ankle ligament. Hudson says he’s still not up to his own standards, but for now his 90-mph sinker is doing the job.
With the loss of Barry Bonds in 2007, there has been a gaping hole in left field. There has been a new starter in that position every opening day since. Michael Morse looks the most apt to be an adequate replacement. His power has already played a large role in the success of the Giants this season. Manager Bruce Bochy remarked that it was valuable to have a ‘left-fielder who can hit the ball out of the park.’ Fans have already been enjoying the song played at Morse’s third at-bat each game. ‘Take On Me’ by A-ha has been his theme song for several years. Some are already wondering if the band will follow through on a previous promise to come and play the song live at one of Morse’s games.
Could this be another championship team? Except for those of us the Bay area, nobody is expecting much from this team…and that’s just how we were viewed in 2010 and 2012, and we all know how those seasons turned out. With so much attention in the National League on the wealthy Dodgers and reliable Cardinals, some may be missing these early warning signs that San Francisco has a hat in this season.