What does a real MLB dynasty look like?
I’ve been wanting to write this piece for forever – I’ve started and I’ve stopped but this picture is an inspiration to finally write the story I need to write.
The “even year” San Francisco Giants are NOT a dynasty and the above picture illustrates that, but I have examples beyond that, that help prove my point.
DEFINITION OF A DYNASTY:
According to the dictionary this is the definition of a dynasty:
- a succession of rulers who are members of the same family
- the period during which a certain family reigns
That can be applied to sports teams …. I define a sports dynasty as follows:
Dynasties are teams that are DOMINATE over a period of time.
(approximately three to five years)
Do the recent “even year” Giants teams fit the bill?
The recent Giants teams have not done that – in their “odd years” they have been so bad that they were not even in contention for the postseason. Not to mention that two of their World Series wins of their “three in five” – they snuck into the postseason as a Wild Card and got lucky to get hot in October. That’s still NOT being consistently dominate.
NFL Comparisons: The early 90’s Dallas Cowboys and the early 90’s SF 49ers:
I like to often make this comparison with a time in the NFL (my favorite time) – back in the early 90’s. I would call the early 90’s San Francisco Forty Niners led by Steve Young, a team I DO NOT LIKE, more of a dynasty than the recent Giants teams.
They played my Cowboys, led by the my favorite person in the entire world – Mr. Troy Aikman, along with Emmitt Smith, Michael Irvin and at the time on of the biggest offensive lines the game had ever seen, in FOUR STRAIGHT NFC Championship games.
The only won one of those games and went on to win just one Super Bowl during that span of four years, but they were consistently dominant – always making it to the Championship game.
The Cowboys during that time were obviously a dynasty, winning three Super Bowls in four years but so were the Niners because they were CONSISTENTLY DOMINANT.
That’s the main criteria to be a dynasty and the recent Giants teams have not been able to consistently dominate – well, anything. They can’t even win their own division!
Back to MLB: the late 80’s early 90’s Oakland A’s
In the late 80’s the A’s consistently dominated the American League. They won three straight AL Pennants. The team may have won just one World Series over that period of time – SWEEPING the SF Giants in 1989 – but they consistently were the best team in the AL for a significant time period.
That was a team that was always worth watching, PEDs aside as they were not the only ones taking them. (In memory of the members of that team that we have lost recently were wonderful people, truly. Rest in Peace Bob Welch, Dave Henderson and Tony Phillips.)
The accomplishment of winning three straight AL Pennants is being more of a dynasty than winning “three in five” when in the “odd years” the team doesn’t even make the postseason. That’s not being a dynasty. It’s more like a little bit of luck in the “even years.”
A bit of MLB history:
The image posted above is one that shows the true dynasties throughout the modern era of the baseball. The Athletics, from Philly all the way through Kansas City to Oakland, have had three – potentially four (if you count their dominance from 1988-1991) true dynasties.
The 1929 Athletics has legends such as Jimmie Foxx and Lefty Grove – Mickey Cochrane, Eddie Collins and Al Simmons. The team was led by the even more legendary Connie Mack, who managed the A’s for 50 years.
Of course I must give credit to the other dynasties out there are the New York Yankees, the Big Red Machine, the St. Louis Cardinals, the Boston Red Sox and the early 1900’s Chicago Cubs.
However, you do not see the Giants because they do not fit into the definition of what a true dynasty is! Calling the recent Giants teams a “dynasty” is a travesty to the aforementioned teams who truly dominated the game for extended periods of time.