SAN FRANCISCO -- Although many players on the Giants' roster are experiencing their first postseason, center fielder Aaron Rowand entered Thursday's Game 5 of the National League Championship Series one win away from advancing to the World Series for the second time in his career.
Rowand, the Giants' 33-year-old center fielder, won it all in 2005 with the White Sox, hitting .276 with six doubles in 12 games.
On Thursday, Rowand said he sees many similarities between that Chicago team and the 2010 San Francisco squad. Like the Giants, with Tim Lincecum, Matt Cain, Jonathan Sanchez and an impressive bullpen, the White Sox also were built around pitching, with four starters winning 14 or more games in Jon Garland, Mark Buehrle, Jose Contreras and Freddy Garcia.
Aside from the pitching staffs, Rowand also said the way in which both teams advanced so far in the postseason was based on their intense regular season. Although the White Sox were in first place the entire season, they were a part of 44 one-run games. This season, the Giants were involved in 52 one-run games.
In both instances, Rowand said he and his teammates were able to draw upon those experiences in October.
"I know in that situation it paid off for us when we got to the playoffs, because it seemed over the course of a season, everybody numerous times had been put up to the plate standing in the batter's box with the game on the line, having to get something done, having to deal with the pressure of the situation, knowing that the ballgame's on the line," Rowand said. "And when you do that repeatedly, when you get to the postseason and everything rides on every pitch, and the pressure mounts, you have something to fall back on. You have that experience to fall back on.
"That played a big part in 2005 for our squad there, and I feel like that's played a big part in this season and this team, because we played so many close ballgames."