Alumni applaud World Series victory
Giants of past very much a part of present celebration
SAN FRANCISCO -- Giants of the past reveled in the triumph of the present as if they were still on the active roster.Envy? Not a chance. Though so many Giants greats were denied the championship ring that the 2010 club earned with its five-game victory over the Texas Rangers in the 106th World Series, those that were contacted reacted to the team's achievement with unbridled enthusiasm. Hall of Fame right-hander Gaylord Perry attended each World Series game as a guest of the club. "I was proud to be there," Perry, a Giant from 1962-71, said Tuesday. "Man, what a relief. Those guys celebrate for us and we're celebrating with them. It's just great." Perry especially appreciated the eight shutout innings rookie left-hander Madison Bumgarner pitched in Sunday's Game 4. They share roots as fellow North Carolina natives. "I see many, many years of great things for him," Perry said. "He has no fear. That's what we love about him." Another Hall of Fame right-hander, Juan Marichal, was at Rangers Ballpark in Arlington as a radio commentator for ESPN Deportes. "It means a lot," Marichal, a Giant from 1960-73, said of the team's accomplishment. "We couldn't do it in those days, but I knew these kids could do it. That's baseball. Sometimes you have a great team and you never win. Like [Chicago Cub] Ernie Banks. He never got a World Series ring." Former infielder Jim Davenport, a Giants special assistant in player development, also attended each game. "It was exciting, no question about it," said Davenport, who played on San Francisco's inaugural Giants team in 1958. "It was fun watching these kids play all year." Davenport, a member of the superstar-laden squads of the 1960s that won their only pennant in 1962, admired the current Giants' ability to handle the game's basics. "We kind of lived and died with the home run, but we did not play good fundamental baseball," Davenport said. "I think they play better fundamental baseball than we did in those days." Former first baseman J.T. Snow, an assistant to general manager Brian Sabean who often accompanies the club on the road, said that he chatted with players on team flights to provide insights into participating in the postseason.
"These guys were all really responsive to it. They wanted to know," said Snow, who discussed topics from dealing with the crush of media to controlling the surge of adrenaline before each game.Snow particularly recalled an hour-long chat on a flight from Philadelphia to San Francisco with outfielder Andres Torres, who entered October with no postseason experience. "I wish I would have had somebody telling me that," said Snow, a four-time postseason participant with the Giants from 1997-2005.
Chris Haft is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.