Another Bay Area Team Adopts the Misfit Meme

By Noah Davis 

Remember when the San Francisco Giants won the hearts and minds of America (oh, and the World Series) as a loveable group of misfits?

We were all like, “Who are these guys?” And it was fun, because we love rooting for the underdog, even if that whole torture thing was a bit creepy, yes? (Plus, beards!)

The underdog Giants played as if there wasn’t any pressure on them. Because there wasn’t, and not just because everyone in the city was stoned. They were a bunch of cast-offs, guys who couldn’t find homes elsewhere. General manager Brian Sabean brought them together and, boom, magic.


The media loved the angle, too. The Giants had personality. They had charisma. They had Tim Lincecum. And they weren’t the New York Yankees.

Where were we? Right, another Bay Area squad is borrowing the underdog tag.

The San Jose Earthquakes are one of Major League Soccer’s punching bags. At least they have been since returning from “hiatus” in 2008. Much to the surprise of everyone who cares about MLS, they got their act together this season and sit one victory from the MLS Cup.

Who are these ‘quakes? Why, “just a bunch of misfits who have played all over the league and have just come together,” says Chris Wondolowski, who somehow managed to become MLS’s top goal-scorer despite not knowing where the net was in previous seasons. (Kidding. Sort of. The dude scored 19 goals in 2010 after netting just six in his previous five seasons.)

The Mercury News gleefully jumped on the misfit meme. It’s only a matter of time before the rest of the country does as well. Or not.

(Note: The image is of the 2008-2009 squad. Not that it matters.)