To say I love baseball is an understatement. To my family, baseball is so much more than a game, but our history. My grandfather tried out for the Giants, my Great Uncle Pete Castiglione played for the Cards and Pirates. My dad, his brother, sister, son, and I played. It is a family tradition to have a passion for baseball. Above all Giants baseball.
I was born and raised on San Francisco Giants baseball. Growing up I would always be asked the typical, “Who’s your favorite baseball team?” which I would reply, “The Giants,” and almost always receive, “I asked about baseball.” It puzzled me that no one knew they were a team, but as kid I did not realize that growing up in New England, not many Giants fans were to be found. I did not think once on the amount of orange and black apparel that took up my wardrobe. I proudly wore at least one article of Giants clothing a week.
My love began when I was four. I would run down the stairs each summer morning, a baggy Bonds jersey down to my knees, sprawl out on the floor, and gawk at the highlights of the previous night’s game. At 10, I achieved one of my greatest memories of witnessing Barry Bonds hit his 748th homerun at Fenway Park, inching closer towards breaking Aaron’s home run record. And while this was my first MLB game, and they did not win, I still could not contain my excitement that I had seen history in the making.
While I do not remember the details of the heart-breaking loss of the 2002 World Series, I am no bandwagon fan. I waited years before being able to see a World Series win. It is crazy to believe that I have been able to witness three World Series wins in the past five years alone. When October came around in 2010 it was a crazy thought that the Giants would be in the playoffs, but everyone loves a good underdog. 2010 would go down as the heart attack year, each game being more intense and terrifying to watch. I will never forget the anxiety I felt during the Phillies series, watching Brian Wilson pitch us out and save the game. The moment we beat the Rangers, I will never forget the excitement and joy I felt. My dad and I ran outside and screamed at the top of our lungs, for once in our lives we had bragging rights over every one else, we had won the World Series. Fighting our way into the 2012 series was an amazing feat. Buster Posey’s grand slam against the Reds still remains as one of my all time favorite moments of the playoffs. Before the World Series began, I made a bet with my dad that if they won I would die my hair orange. And when that day came I proudly turned heads, with people constantly asking me, “Why orange,” “Because that’s the color of champions.”
The 2014 World Series remains my favorite of the three. Torture seems to be a reoccurring theme throughout series in which the Giants are involved. Whether it was cringing and sitting through 18 innings to be rewarded with Brandon Baby Giraffe Belt’s homerun at the top of the inning or watching all your dreams flash before your eyes in Game 7 of the World Series when the win is almost blown in the bottom of the 9th, they know how to make your heart stop. 2014 also had a collection of some of my favorite players: Hunter Pence, Pablo Sandoval, Buster Posey, and Madison Bumgarner.
MadBum had an absolutely fantastic World Series run. It is baffling to think he pitched the World Series with an ERA of 0.25. It was an amazing series, and while it was not a sweep like the previous win, I would not have had it any other way.
I have never been so proud to be a Giant’s fan. Half of my wardrobe consists of apparel, I have an orange panda hat, bobble heads, and my own Giants Louisville Slugger bat. I have now had orange hair twice, and I cannot wait to see how much more dye I will go through. Here’s to even years.
by Laura Grosso