Last One Here...
For close to thirty five plus years now, I've been a San Francisco Giants baseball fan. Now granted, the city I live in, we only had two teams which were ever aired on TV during my formative years, the Oakland Athletics (A's) and the SF Giants. My sister went the way of the Atlanta Braves because they had "cute players"; she quickly found out that losing when it matters isn't cute. I'm not sure if that's why I've never met anyone she's interested in, I'll round the bases with that thought in some other post.
The Oakland A's had players such has Walt Weiss, Dave Henderson, Mike Gallego, Dennis Eck, Dave Stewart, Ricky Henderson and Dave Henderson just to name a few, I'm obviously leaving the names of the "Bash Brothers" out of this due to an NDA I was forced to sign with the powers that be of Major League Baseball.
Now, the San Francisco Giants had players like Candy Maldonado, Jose Uribe, Robbie Thompson (still one of my favorite Giants), Chili Davis, Mike Krukow, Dave Dravecky, and the sweet swinging Will "The Thrill" Clark. The truth be told, I was sold on any team having players named Chili, Candy, and "The Thrill". IF I had to guess as to when I started taking note of the game of baseball, I would say it was in 1986/'87. It feels as though all of my sports affiliations started around this time.
Much like most young kids, at the time, we made these athletes bigger than life and we were the students of the game, who took to our own sandlots, street corners, and playgrounds attempting to emulate swings, pitches, fielding, and bubble gum tobacco chewing. To this day, Robbie Thompson has never heard of me and my wonder-glove and powerful bat. I was born to play second base and hit sixth within a roster, the problem was my parents weren't in a position to buy gloves, bats, hats, and jerseys, which were needed for me to play travel ball.
As a family we watched hundreds of games over the years but it was me who always dreamed of throwing out a first pitch, standing on a field, or throwing out a first pitch at a game. To this day, it still amazes me that there are men who can't throw a ball of any type from the mound to home plate. At the age of ten, I knew I could chuck a ball a country mile and that ability still has yet to leave me! Shoot, I have a female friend who played catch with me, not too long ago and I was shocked at her throwing ability and it wasn't because she's a woman. I found myself smiling and my heart skipping a beat, due to the fact that I've always wanted to play catch with a female friend/girl/girlfriend/girl I like 🥰. I'm a hopeless romantic, it's the little things in life I'm missing.
Let me get back to baseball! The years have obviously continued to move forward and my love for the SF Giants has yet to be diminished. The club came off a decade in which they won, three World Series rings. My bank account rebounded from various playoff games and one World Series game (haha). We can lose so much in life but more often than not we cannot lose the memories which are near and dear to us.
I recently visited the park to watch a Sunday afternoon game and all of the familiarity of the area came rushing back. Unfortunately, I couldn't remember the last regular season game I had been to so that made me think that it had been some time. Either way, I got to my seat just in time to catch all of the pregame festivities and I stayed in my seat long after the game was over. There's never any sense in rushing to get out of a stadium when all you're going to do is sit in traffic, for thirty minutes.
The workers were busily cleaning the vending areas and bathrooms, it was amazing to see who quickly the stadium emptied. To my surprise, I found myself being one of the last patrons in the stadium. There was a game steward who looked at me, smiled, and then he said, "You're almost the LAST ONE HERE". I came to and realized that I was living a dream, within a stadium I had grown up loving. The spirits of former players were out on the field warming up, the funny part is my spirit was out there too.
It's the little things in life which place a smile on my face and I hope these little stories that I write take you to a place where you can smile as well 😊.