San Francisco Giants: The all-time bracket

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Pitcher Juan Marichal of the San Francisco Giants (Photo by Herb Scharfman/Sports Imagery/Getty Images)

The most successful franchise in National League history presents a field of legendary teams

The San Francisco Giants franchise is second only to the New York Yankees for all-time success. Since coming into existence in 1883, the Giants have a .535 winning percentage, best in the history of the National League.

In New York and then in San Francisco the franchise has earned 10 recognized world championships and 23 National League pennants.

There has almost never been a significant era in baseball history in which the Giants have not been a force.

That record begins in the late 1880s when the team won the 1888 and 1889 National League pennants and both seasons beat the American Association champions in a recognized World Series. The 1889 team had both the better regular season and post-season record; hence it merits a place in the bracket.

The Giants were again a force in the pre-World War I era. Between 1904 and 1917, they won six pennants and the 1905 World Series. That memorable team led by John McGraw and Christy Mathewson is a worthy representative of the era.

Between 1921 and 1924, they became the first time in history to win four consecutive pennants. They added the 1921 and 1922 World Series. The 1921 team becomes a third representative.

The Giants won the World Series in 1933, but the 1936 and 1937 champions – both of which were beaten by the Yankees – were better clubs. The 1937 team merits a spot.

The 1954 Giants memorably upset the powerhouse Cleveland Indians behind a young star named Willie Mays. They’re in. So is the 1962 club, the first great San Francisco team.

The 1989 Giants had the best record between 1967 and 1993; they are in. That leaves one final spot for the best of the recent world champions. Of those three teams, the 2012 Giants had the best regular-season record, so they’re the pick.

The format is identical to previous bracket challenges. Each matchup in the tournament is decided based on seven criteria. You can think of each as a ‘game,’ the winner of four games advancing. The seven criteria are:

  1. Game 1: Regular season winning percentage.
  2. Game 2: Post-season winning percentage
  3. Game 3: Team OPS+
  4. Game 4: Team ERA+
  5. Game 5 (if necessary): Team WAR
  6. Game 6 (if necessary: Fielding percentage above the league average for the season in question.
  7. Game 7 (if necessary): Hall of Famers or likely future Hall of Famers

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