The Year the Giants Won the Series

Drawn from his personal journal, Joseph Sutton’s observations of the San Francisco Giants’ climb to win the 2010 World Series will remind you over and over again how a bunch of ragtag ballplayers became champions of the world against all odds.

Interspersed with comments from his notes of twenty years ago as Little League coach for his young son Ray’s teams, Sutton enhances the importance that baseball has in cementing relationships between fathers and sons, and some daughters too.

Excerpt

Thursday, October 28, 2010

The Giants won the second game of the Series 9-0 tonight. As Giants’ announcer Mike Krukow sometimes says, “It was a laugher.” It was a tight game (2-0 in favor of the Giants) until the eighth inning. In that inning the Giants scored seven runs, as three Texas relievers couldn’t get the ball over the plate and walked four batters. The Giants got only two hits that inning, one being a bases-loaded triple by Aaron Rowand. In the fifth inning, the score 0-0, Ian Kinsler of the Rangers smashed a ball that hit the top of the padded center field wall for what seemed like a home run…but the ball, miraculously, bounced back of its own accord for a double. That apparent home run could have changed the whole complexion of the game, but somehow the baseball gods were on San Francisco’s side. Matt Cain, who hasn’t been scored upon in three postseason games, pitched 7 1/3 scoreless innings before the bullpen took over.

The Giants are a bunch of unknowns who are two victories shy of winning the 2010 World Series. It would be the first time they’ve won the Fall Classic since moving from the Bronx to San Francisco in 1958. The people of San Francisco, after waiting 52 years, are starving for a title. They are now on the brink of gaining it. No one on the team, outside of Tim Lincecum, is known in the baseball world. They have no superstars like Barry Bonds, Willie Mays, Derek Jeter, Ryan Howard, Josh Hamilton, Albert Pujols or Alex Rodriguez. This team of no-names is a bunch of fighters and scrappers. They don’t give up. They’re tenacious. They’re like your average Joe in any profession, but somehow they have blended together to become a TEAM. Destiny is on their side.

Sometimes I wonder if I said the right thing to my son Ray one day. He was pitching and getting battered in a Little League baseball game. I wanted to teach him a lesson because he was getting down on himself and wanted to quit pitching that day. I walked out to the mound and didn’t say, “Don’t give up on yourself.” Instead, I said, “You’re going to pitch till the inning is over.” I wonder if he remembers that incident. He was 10 at the time.

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