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AT&T Park in sunny San Francisco, California is the home of the MLB’s San Francisco Giants. Established back in 1883 as the New York Gothams, the Giants moniker was acquired in 1886. While their team name has stayed the same since then, their hometown changed in 1958 when the Giants moved west to San Francisco.
As the iconic Polo Grounds in Manhattan began to fall apart, the Giants sought a new stadium in which to play their games. This opened the door for the ownership to explore other markets, with California becoming the front runner. The New York Giants moved to California along with the Brooklyn Dodgers in 1957, ending the golden age of New York baseball.
Winners of five World Series titles in New York, the Giants reached the fall classic in 1962, just a few years after their move. Unfortunately, they lost to the Yankees in seven games. Despite the play of some talented teams on the field and star players, another World Series berth would not come until 1989. The unceremonious sweep by the Oakland Athletics in the “Bay Bridge Series” was upstaged by a major earthquake that shook the bay area and delayed the World Series by 10 days.
Several dismal seasons would follow as the Giants could not seem to put together a winning formula that would serve them in the postseason. The 2002 squad came within a few outs of a title, leading in what would’ve been a clinching game 6 of the World Series against the Anaheim Angels 5-0 in the 7th inning before losing the game and then the series the next night in game 7.
2010 proved to be a year of destiny for the San Francisco Giants. Despite not being predicted to even make the playoffs, they exceeded all expectations on the way to their first World Series title since 1954. Their first championship in San Francisco was won over the Texas Rangers in five games.
After missing the playoffs in 2011, the Giants were determined to get back on course in 2012. Starting pitcher Matt Cain pitched the 22nd perfect game in MLB history, and the first in Giants franchise history. Returning to the postseason that year after winning the NL West, the Giants advanced again to the World Series where they swept the Detroit Tigers in four games.
Another championship would follow in 2014, as the Giants defeated the Kansas City Royals in seven game. This third championship in five years catapulted this team to heights of what many consider to be a modern-day baseball dynasty. Major contributors to these titles include Tim Lincecum, Matt Cain, Madison Bumgarner, Barry Zito, Brian Wilson, Buster Posey, Freddy Sanchez, Andres Torres, Aubrey Huff, Cody Ross, Pablo Sandoval, and Hunter Pence.
These players join legends of the past including Will Clark, Juan Marichal, Willie McCovey, Willie Mays, and Barry Bonds who have all gone down in Giants history.
This year’s squad is looking to add yet another ring to the collection. While the roster turnover has brought new faces into the clubhouse, some core players remain with the team including Posey, Sandoval, Bumgarner, and Pence. Newcomers Evan Longoria (from Tampa Bay) and Andrew McCutchen (from Pittsburgh) are hoping to bolster their impressive MLB resumes by adding a World Series championship. San Francisco continues to remain a threat in the NL West. Manager Bruce Bochy aims to join an elite group of MLB skippers with four or more World Series titles. For more information about the San Francisco Giants click here.