OK, I underestimated the Giants -- or at least the Giants' offense.
It's early, too early to take much of anything seriously. But the Giants averaged 5.7 runs in their first seven games, second in the National League. And while four of those games were at hitter-friendly Chase Field, against the Diamondbacks' wobbly pitching staff, the other three were in pitcher-friendly Dodger Stadium, against the supposedly mighty Dodgers.
Before right-hander Zack Greinke stifled the Giants on Sunday night, a number of Dodgers pitchers told me that they noticed a difference in the San Francisco offense, specifically citing the addition of free-agent left fielder Michael Morse.
But it isn't just Morse.
It's a healthy Angel Pagan, a slimmed-down Pablo Sandoval, an ascendant Brandon Belt -- and something intangible, as well.
"They work together (offensively)," Dodgers left-handed reliever J.P. Howell said. "Not many teams do that. You can tell they're communicating."
Functioning as a team, which in the end might be their biggest advantage over the more talented Dodgers.
The Giants, of course, won the 2010 and '12 World Series, and virtually all of their core players were part of at least one of those clubs.
Morse, a member of a close-knit Nationals club from 2009-12, said that the difference between those Washington teams and his current San Francisco team is the Giants' legacy of winning.
"Everyone has done so much in their careers. And one of the great things about it is that they've done it together," Morse said. "They tell you stories about how good it was -- and how good it's going to be again."
Pagan, meanwhile, shared an unusual motivation for returning sooner than expected from surgery on his left hamstring last season, a motivation that I could not recall another player articulating.
The surgery was expected to sideline Pagan for 12 weeks; he returned in nine and had a big September. His goal, he said, was to show the front office that the team was good enough to warrant a boost in payroll. And his efforts certainly didn't hurt.
The Giants spent $172 million last offseason, re-signing right fielder Hunter Pence, left-handed reliever Javier Lopez and right-handers Tim Lincecum and Ryan Vogelsong while adding Morse and right-hander Tim Hudson in free agency.
The team's Opening Day payroll, a franchise-record $154.1 million, is the seventh-highest in the majors. Yet, the Giants remain one of the game's hungriest, most professional outfits, an edge that is difficult to quantify.
"I learned how to be a winner after I came here to be in San Francisco," said Pagan, who joined the team in 2012. "Now that I have a ring, I want more. It's addictive."