For all the folks in the back, never forget the San Francisco Giants' 2021 season -- during which they won a franchise record 107 games -- was nothing but a fluke. You'll never convince us otherwise! Los Angeles Dodgers fans will be calling it out until the end of time because it eventually screwed them in that year's playoffs since they were forced into the Wild Card Game after finishing one (1) game behind their division rivals.
Ah, and how far the Giants have fallen since. They finished 81-81 last year after filling the voids left by Kevin Gausman and Kris Bryant with Carlos Rodón and Joc Pederson. Bummer. Looks like Brandon Belt, Evan Longoria, Brandon Crawford and Buster Posey can't carry you into the next century!
Then, this offseason, they lost Rodón to the Yankees, whiffed on Aaron Judge and Carlos Correa, and ended up with ... a group of second- and third-rate free agents as a consolation prize.
Where does that land them heading into the 2023 season? Well, if you ask MLB.com's Mike Petriello, that'd be the seventh "contender tier" (out of nine) alongside the Boston Red Sox and Miami Marlins.
The Dodgers? All by their lonesome in Tier 3, which really isn't a bad place to be considering they witnessed an exodus of star players/cultural leaders this offseason. Either way, still far and away ahead of the Giants!
Dodgers fans will laugh at Giants' contender ranking from MLB.com
Frame this beauty from Petriello:
"The Giants … simultaneously 'were unable to sign high-profile free-agent targets Aaron Judge and Carlos Correa' and 'had a quite productive winter, adding a number of quality players like Michael Conforto, Mitch Haniger, Sean Manaea, Ross Stripling and Taylor Rogers.' Of course, Haniger is already injured, and so is Brandon Crawford. And Carlos Rodón is in New York and Brandon Belt is in Toronto and Evan Longoria is in Arizona, and suddenly, this is a very different team, one that should still be competitive, perhaps even for a Wild Card spot, but isn’t terribly young or with much star power. (Logan Webb and Camilo Doval might be the only notable pitchers under 30 years old.) This really won’t be a bad team. It might even be a good one. It’s just not terribly likely that whenever the next great Giants team comes around, it’ll look much like this one does."- Mike Petriello, MLB.com
Even if the Giants manage to succeed in 2023, the 2024 version of their roster will be much different, leaving them with another situation where they're starting back at start. And that's kind of a best-case scenario for them right now.
You know it's bad when an arbitrary simulation doesn't have faith in you, either. Are we surprised, though? The Giants have a middling MLB roster and farm system (MLB.com has them ranked 17th in the league).
The Dodgers, despite a significant downgrade and a number of graduating prospects, lap the Giants in both departments. Though LA fans shouldn't concern themselves with anybody else heading into what should be a difficult 2023 season, it's comforting to make note of their most hated rivals being far worse off despite multiple desperate attempts to not be in such a situation.