A week ago it was announced that Pablo Sandoval needed Tommy John surgery, seemingly ending his season. And it did end it for all practical purposes. Yesterday, however, the Giants — with an assist from the expanded September roster — made an exception for him for a good reason.
The team activated the injured Sandoval so he could make one last at bat. A last at bat for his longtime manager Bruce Bochy and, possibly, his last at bat, ever, as a San Francisco Giant.
The crowd gave Sandoval a lengthy standing ovation when he came on to the on-deck circle in the seventh inning and continued to cheer him as he was announced as a pinch hitter. He only saw two pitches: first a called strike and then a fastball with which he made contact, hitting a slow tapper to short:
Sandoval on the experience:
Just one of those moments you don’t want to forget. I didn’t get the result I wanted, but I got the best result, the love from the fans.
Bochy, on what he said as he greeted Sandoval when he returned to the dugout:
I said, ‘It’s been a joy.’ Obviously we were hoping to get a base hit there, but I think he saw how much he’s loved here with the crowd. What a great ovation they gave him.
He deserved that and a lot more. Everything he’s done for this organization is unbelievable, just how clutch he’s been. Pablo’s a top-notch guy and a great teammate.
Nice gesture by the Giants, for sure.
Buster Posey has opted out of the 2020 MLB season. The San Francisco Giants have issued a statement saying that they “fully support Buster’s decision. Buster is an integral part of our team and will be sorely missed, but we look forward to having him back in 2021.”
Posey and his wife are adopting identical twin girls who were born prematurely and who are currently in the NICU and will be for some time. They are stable, but obviously theirs is not a situation that would be amenable to the demands of a baseball season as it’s currently structured.
Poset had missed all of the Giants’ workouts so far, Recently he said, “I think there’s still some reservation on my end as well. I think I want to see kind of how things progress here over the next couple of weeks. I think it would be a little bit maybe naive or silly not to gauge what’s going on around you, not only around you here but paying attention to what’s happening in the country and different parts of the country.” He said that he talked about playing with his wife quite a great deal but, really, this seems like a no-brainer decision on his part.
In opting out Posey is foregoing the 60-game proration of his $21.4 million salary. He is under contract for one more year at $21.4 million as well. The Giants can pick up his 2022 club option for $22 million or buy him out for $3 million.
A veteran of 11 seasons, Posey has earned about $124 million to date. Which seems to be the common denominator with players who have opted out thus far. With the exception of Joe Ross and Héctor Noesí, the players to have opted out thus far have earned well above $10 million during their careers. Players that aren’t considered “high risk” and elect not to play do not get paid and do not receive service time.