So many players, coaches, front office people and members of the ownership group have had their hand in the three championships the San Francisco Giants have won over the last five years. But who is the most responsible. Nothing like a top 10 list to debate who had the biggest impact and who is the biggest reason the Giants are being referred to as a dynasty.
The Giants had never won a World Series in San Francisco until these 6 men became Giants. All 6 had important roles in a Giants patchwork lineup that out hit the Braves, Phillies and Rangers in 2010. What makes these men unique in this historic run of the Giants is that none of them were able to do much for the Giants outside of 2010. Torres, Sanchez and Uribe were members of the Giants in 2009, but played smaller roles. Huff, Burrell and Ross had terrific numbers as Giants in 2010.
Wins Above Replacement in 2010:
Aubrey Huff (5.7)
Andres Torres (5.3)
Pat Burrell (2.1)
Freddy Sanchez (1.8)
Juan Uribe (1.5)
Cody Ross, who only played a month for the Giants before the post-season, made up for it in October, hitting .294 with 15 hits, 10 runs batted in and 5 home runs or a 1.076 OPS. Andres Torres highest WAR after 2010 was the 1.4 he had for the Mets in 2012.
Without these 6 men, the Giants don’t win in 2010. Without winning it all in 2010, is there any talk of a dynasty?
What the misfits were to 2010, Scutaro was to 2012. Injuries plagued his 2013 season that he tried to play through, and ultimately his back wouldn’t let him play in 2014. He was recently designated for assignment by the Giants. However, his impact on the Giants in 2012 was enormous. He had a 2.1 WAR despite only 268 at bats. He hit .500 in the NLCS alone with 14 hits and a 1.140 OPS. His patience at the plate and his influence in the locker room helped the entire roster play smarter and more efficient. While he doesn’t make my top 10, he certainly is one of the most influential figures in this dynasty for the Giants.
The Top 10
#10: Ownership Group
I’m not going to pretend to know all the interworkings of the front office to know who among the group approved the salary raises for our homegrown players, or told Brian Sabean he could make a certain trade or sign a certain player.
According to Baseball Prospectus, the Giants went from a payroll of $95M at the end of 2009 to a current payroll of $179M in 2014. That kind of financial commitment has as much to do with the success of the franchise as any other factor.
The combination of re-signing homegrown talent and trading or signing players to free agent contracts, wouldn’t be possible without the support of the ownership group.