My guaranteed World Series prediction …..

October 27, 2010 |

I really don’t know what to say about this team showing up in the fall classic. They dug and clawed their way back into contention for the National League’s Western Division, with an especially strong September run. They overcame a fast, early divisional lead by the San Diego Padres.

In fact, the surprising Padres were the talk of the NL for much of the regular season. Did the Giants convey their image and the overall content of a rather lackluster lineup throughout the 2010 season? You bet. Only two players showed up on the Opening Day and postseason lineup card; Aubrey Huff and Juan Uribe. Not exactly a powercharged “Hamilton & Cruz” tag team combination, huh?

That said, throughout the regular season, the Giants made key acquisitions that bolstered a certain chemistry that I would’ve never predicted. Nobody in their right mind could’ve imagined it. Pat Burrell and Cody Ross? C’mon, they sound like names of potential Orioles.

Give Bruce Bochy credit, he juggled a lineup that included a notable regression by Pablo Sandoval, and injuries to Aaron Rowand and Edgar Renteria. The Giants lineup features at least four players (Huff, Renteria, Sanchez, Burrell) who are on the downside of their careers and not exactly known as “producers.” Perhaps, the real difference maker for the Giants has been the arrival of one of the game’s truest talents ….

San Francisco Giants catcher Buster Posey looks on during workouts in preparation for the Major League Baseball's World Series in San Francisco October 26, 2010. The Giants will face the Texas Rangers in the series opening game on Wednesday. REUTERS/Robert Galbraith (UNITED STATES - Tags: SPORT BASEBALL)

Gerald “Buster” Posey has been everything the San Francisco Giants could’ve wished. The rookie catcher arrived midseason and he delivered a .305 batting clip, 124 hits and 18 bombs in just 108 games. Now you know why Giants GM, Brian Sabean, dealt Bengie Molina to the World Series opponent.

However, the Giants true asset has been the dependable, if not superb, starting pitching. In 2007, the Giants lineup had none of the current parts. Yet, their 2007 starting staff included three pitchers, Tim Lincecum, Matt Cain and Barry Zito, who rounded out this rotation for much of the regular season.

As important as Cliff Lee has been to the Rangers, in a relatively brief window, Tim Lincecum has defined consistency and dominance atop the Giants pitching staff ….

San Francisco Giants center fielder Cody Ross (L) celebrates with pitcher Tim Lincecum (C) after defeating the Atlanta Braves following Game 4 of their MLB National League Division Series baseball playoff game in Atlanta, Georgia, October 11, 2010. REUTERS/Tami Chappell (UNITED STATES - Tags: SPORT BASEBALL)

Admittedly, I’m still perplexed by Lincecum’s power and strength, especially given his fragile frame. He’s not exactly built on a foundation of muscle. But, his numbers are inarguable – 3.43 era, 231 k’s, 1.27 whip.

It is what it is …. and Tim Lincecum is a premier starting pitcher.

Yet, when I look at the San Francisco Giants, as a team, I don’t see that dominant product ….