Alright, you Giants grumps. You think you're so hot. You think you're so smart. You think the Michael Morse deal was the culmination of a sad, boring offseason. Here's your chance to prove it and become a millionaire in the process. A millionaire.
As long as you're already a five-hundred-thousandaire and feeling a little froggy. Atlantis in Reno was the first sportsbook to release the over/unders for the 2014 season, and here's the part you care about:
San Francisco Giants 86.5
Well, well, well. Looks like the people with a financial stake in this expect the Giants to make a 10-game improvement, more or less. And your job is to ...
Los Angeles Dodgers 92.5
Oh, son of a ... look, that's not the point. The point is the Giants are expected to be a little better than they were last year by smart people, and those people are willing to give you money if they're wrong.
Also of note: These odds have a lot to do with how various fan bases spend, so it's not like this is supposed to be a PECOTA-like prediction. I could see Giants fans spending a lot of nuh-uh money on the over. We had a bad year last year. We've been through a lot. They'll be good again because one franchise shouldn't suffer so much, you know? That feeling and believe in a just universe makes us spend money. The inveterate gamblers among us, at least.
Here, then, are the Reno Standings:
Giants - 86.5-75.5
Diamondbacks - 81-81
Rockies - 76.5-85.5
Padres - 76.5-86.5
These standings would leave the Braves tied with the Giants, too, which would mean a playoff for a playoff to get to the playoffs. Sounds like a hoot. And, again, in February, I would absolutely take that as a guarantee. In a couple months, that will seem either ridiculously optimistic or sadly pessimistic. Here's to the latter.