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Last night was another game with nothing of interest:

  1. Jamey Wright is still a fifth starter.
  2. Eliezer Alfonzo is still hitting like someone that wants to collect a pension.
  3. The Giants can struggle to score runs, even at Coors Field.
  4. I'm with Ken Macha. We need to get a Dateline crew on that humidor. I get the feeling the scale at my local deli is regulated more closely.
  5. I don't really think the humidor is being used unfairly, but it'd be fun to blame the offensive woes on something other than a gaggle of mediocre players.
And that's the only real issue with this team: mediocre players. Some days they're better than mediocre, some days they're worse, and it all evens out in the end. I can't imagine a better example of a .500 team. No one's really tanking it. No one's really hitting or pitching above what you'd expect. It could be worse; they could be a bad team. Some teams would kill for mediocre.

Which brings today's comment starter, though it's actually more of a roll call. Heck, I'll even put one of those newfangled polls in the comments section. The question is this: Are the playoffs are enough of a crapshoot that a mediocre team can win the World Series?

I've always been of that mind. Get in the playoffs, and let the microdynamics of baseball take over. Remember Noah Lowry's run in August last year? There could be two Giant pitchers who do that in October. Edgardo Alfonzo hit .359/.457/.538 last April. Lance Niekro could do better in a stretch of fifteen games. Anyone can. That's kind of the point.

This isn't to completely remove talent from the equation. A .600 team will beat a .500 more often than not, but not that much more often. Not often enough to stop trying to get in the playoffs, and not often enough to completely dismiss the chance of fluky success once a team is in.

I'm not really revealing the structure of the double helix for the first time; this stuff has all been hashed out on better sites than this. But I wanted to see where the denizens here stood on the issue. I'm not willing to part with Matt Cain or Jonathan Sanchez for a minor upgrade or rental, and it would be a terrible idea to trade players like Marcus Sanders, Travis Ishikawa, and Nate Schierholtz when their value has dropped so low. This isn't the season to completely mortgage the future.

However, as long as the Giants are just a couple of games back, I think it's silly to call for trading away Vizquel or Schmidt. I want in the playoffs, and I want the rest of the baseball-loving world to shake their head in disgust. "Eight RBI for Jason Ellison in Game Seven? Didn't see that coming...." Maybe it's irrational optimism, but I can't remember a time when following this team was rational. Like, the '60s, or something?

Poll

Struggling to get a mediocre team in the playoffs: Worth it?

This poll is closed

  • 73%
    Yes
    (30 votes)
  • 26%
    No
    (11 votes)
41 votes total Vote Now