This is the thirteenth time in the past thirty years that the Giants have been within five games of a playoff spot with ten games to go. The other seasons, separated into appropriate categories:
Running away with it like Darren Ford being chased by a velociraptor
1987 – The Giants were 7.5 ahead with ten games left, and they finished six games ahead.
1989 – They were five up with ten left. My nephew was born on the day the Giants clinched, and my mom was irritated that my sister couldn’t hold him in for just one more day. That was pretty rude.
2000 – After a miserable April, the Giants were 11.5 ahead with 10 left. Let’s see…carry the one…add the numerator…I think they might have clinched at this point.
2003 – Wire to wire. The Giants had already clinched, and they finished 15.5 up.
Nail-biters, positive outcome before the heartbreak:
1997 – The Giants were one back with ten to play, and then Brian Johnson stole a base off Mariano Rivera before a Bill Mueller single. Or something.
2002 – The Giants were 6.5 of the division lead, but they were a game ahead in the wild-card standings with ten left. They won the wild-card by 3.5 games before chewing our soul and spitting it out just weeks later.
Nail-biters, heartbreak before the chance of greater heartbreak:
1982 – Four games back with ten left, and then they gained three games in three days. They finished two games back of the Braves, but at least there was Joe Morgan.
1993 – The Giants were 2.5 back with ten left. They finished one measly game back. Yick.
1998 – Four behind two teams in the wild-card chase. They would have won it free and clear if it weren’t for Colorado and Neifi Perez.
2001 – Lost in the Barry Bonds madness and memories was that the Giants were just 1.5 back with ten to play. They finished two games back. Man, the pitching was repugnant that year.
2004 – With ten left, they were just a half-game behind the Dodgers and a half-game behind Houston with ten left. Then Steve Finley. The Giants finished two back of the division, and one back of the wild card. They would have won it free and clear if it weren’t for Colorado and Neifi Perez.
2009 – Down four games of wild-card leaders. Finished four back. At no point was it really exciting.
No commentary. Just a review of the tight races from past decades. This is up there. Right up there. As close as it gets. This is as stressful as a season has been with just ten games left.
Stress. Stress. Stress.
/breathes into a paper bag