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As a New York Mets and Cleveland Indians fan, I care very, very little about the upcoming NLCS (other than my hatred for everything Philadelphia sports). That’s not the case with my best friend and best man in my wedding, James. He has followed the San Francisco Giants since the late ’80s, rather impressive when you consider the fact that he’s lived in western Pennsylvania his entire life. James doesn’t just believe his Giants have a chance to beat the Phillies. He knows that San Fran is playing in the 2010 World Series. How can he be so sure? I went ahead and asked him.
Here are ten reasons the Giants will win the 2010 NLCS, spoken to us from a die hard San Francisco fan.
Reasons the Giants will win the 2010 NLCS no. 1: “Timmy freakin’ Lincecum”
After a rough August, Lincecum has once again emerged as the most dominant pitcher in the National League, if not all of Major League Baseball. The Braves couldn’t touch him during the NLDS, as Lincecum threw a complete game two-hit shutout. He struck out 14 along the way, and will be 100 percent rested and ready once the NLCS starts.
What about Doc Halladay, you ask? He’s 0-2 lifetime against the Giants with a 7.23 ERA. Not concerned in the slightest.
Reasons the Giants will win the 2010 NLCS no. 2: Matt Cain
The real best number two pitcher in the postseason. It’s not his fault he didn’t get the W in game two of the NLCS. He did his job, giving up one run (unearned) in 6.2 innings pitched. With Lincecum and Cain going 1-2 in the rotation, the bullpen will be plenty fresh heading into games three through seven.
Reasons the Giants will win the 2010 NLCS no. 3: Jonathan Sanchez and Madison Bumgarner
The hits keep on not coming for the Phillies. There’s nothing close to a weak link in the Giants’ rotation, yet they receive far less attention than Philly’s pitching staff. Don’t believe the Giants can hang with the Phils? San Fran’s four starters have thus far allowed only three earned runs in 29 innings pitched during the postseason. Now, if only the Giants had a closer…
Reasons the Giants will win the 2010 NLCS no. 4: Fear the Beard
Brian Wilson has been stellar throughout October, earning two saves during the NLCS. Here’s one short memo for manager Bruce Bochy and staff: DO NOT BRING WILSON IN FOR MORE THAN THREE OUTS. I don’t want to see him in the eighth inning unless he’s warming up or feeding birds that have nested in his Peter Griffin-esque beard.
Reasons the Giants will win the 2010 NLCS no. 5: The Giants have some bats
I’m tired of reading how the Phils are going to out-slug every team they face. The Giants have Aubrey Huff (26 homers, 86 RBI during the season), Cody Ross (already has a HR this postseason and Pat “The Bat” Burrell (also has a round tripper). You Philly fans may remember Burrell from such hits as the 2008 World Series. The Giants also have a young catcher Philly fans should be worrying about.
Reasons the Giants will win the 2010 NLCS no. 6: The unflappable Buster Posey
The best hitting rookie that’s currently playing meaningful professional baseball games in North America. Posey hit .375 in the NLDS (6-16), with a double and two BB. Be nervous, Phils followers, if Posey comes up in the eighth inning with runners in scoring position. Even better, Posey doesn’t have to call a great game once during the NLCS. He’s catching for the best staff currently playing in a championship series.
Reasons the Giants will win the 2010 NLCS no. 7: AT&T Park is the complete opposite of Citizens Bank Park
Unlike that softball field you call an MLB ballpark located in Philly, you actually have to man up to hit a homer at AT&T Park. AT&T Park is a pitcher’s ballpark that was essentially built for a playoff run by this particular Giants team. Games 4 and 5 of the NLCS, played in San Fran, start at twilight. Bad news for a team that’s known for hitting the ball out of the park.
Reasons the Giants will win the 2010 NLCS no. 8: Philly can only win so many championships in a window of time
You guys got to celebrate a professional sports championship a couple of years ago. By my count, you now have to wait another 9,000 or so days before you get another one. Keep holding onto hope that the Kevin Kolb era is going to work out, though.
Reasons the Giants will win the 2010 NLCS no. 9: Veteran leadership that’s been there before
We get it, the Phillies have lived in the postseason the past few years. Good for them. The 2010 NLCS isn’t the first rodeo for guys like Edgar Renteria, Pat Burrell or Juan Uribe. If anything, the Giants have the perfect mix of both youthful energy and veteran leadership to topple a team that, in the eyes of many baseball fans, is destined to once again play in the World Series.
Reasons the Giants will win the 2010 NLCS no. 10: Secret weapon, Barry Zito
Yeah, Zito hasn’t been great in 2010. When he was shut down during the NLDS, Zito had a chance to fully rest up and think about why he wasn’t playing in the postseason. A re-energized and re-motivated Zito could be just what the Giants need to keep the Phillies off the board late in a must-win game.
Prediction: Giants in seven. Timmy or Cain close out the series in enemy territory, just like the Giants did against Atlanta. These road warriors will again shock many baseball fans as they head into (and win) the World Series.