Giants’ band of misfits and miscasts beat Phillies to advance to World Series

San Francisco Giants players, including Pablo Sandoval, Cody Ross, Brian Wilson, Andres Torres and Aubrey Huff (L-R) celebrate their victory against the Philadelphia Phillies to win the National League pennant in Game 6 of their Major League Baseball NLCS playoff series in Philadelphia, October 23, 2010. REUTERS/Ray Stubblebine (UNITED STATES - Tags: SPORT BASEBALL)

After failing to land Adam LaRoche in the offseason, the San Francisco Giants “settled” on Aubrey Huff, who nobody showed much interest in.

After a successful stint with the Giants in 2009, Juan Uribe didn’t garner much interest from other teams this offseason on the open market, so he re-signed with San Fran for one year on the cheap.

In fear that the Padres would pick him up, the Giants claimed Cody Ross off waivers from the Marlins, who wanted to save a measly $1 million so they basically gave him away for free.

It was Huff’s single in the third inning that put the Giants on the board after the Phillies had taken a 2-0 lead in Game 6 of the NCLS Saturday night. It was Uribe’s home run in the eighth that broke a 2-2 tie, and it was Ross’s MVP play throughout the entire series that helped the G-Men knock off the defending National League champions to earn a date with the Rangers in the 2010 World Series.

Of course, there were others that helped San Fran get to this point. After he was dumped midseason by the Rays and couldn’t find work, the Giants took a flier on Pat Burrell, who essentially took a hometown discount because nobody else showed any interest in the veteran. The club’s best hitter is rookie catcher Buster Posey, who started the year in Triple-A because the Giants were concerned that he couldn’t handle their outstanding pitching staff. Andres Torres is a 32-year-old lifelong journeyman who came out of nowhere to seize the leadoff spot in their lineup when Aaron Rowand was hurt and ineffective earlier in the year.

Manager Bruce Bochy calls this team the “Dirty Dozen” because it’s essentially a bunch of miscasts and misfits that came together to do something pretty amazing. The Giants’ pitching staff rivals that of anyone in the league (just ask the Phillies and Braves), but none of this would have been possible if guys like Huff, Burrell, Torres, Posey and Ross didn’t gel. Did the Giants catch some breaks along the way? Absolutely, but that doesn’t mean that they’re any less deserving. The resiliency that this team has shown throughout the year is impressive and just when you think they’re done, they find a way in the end.

They’ve tortured their fans throughout the year with too many one-run games to count. But alas, torture has never felt so good.

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