Dr. Lefty Guest Post: In Memoriam: Allen Hirsch (avwh), July 24, 1953-December 20, 2015

By DrLefty

It was the evening of Sunday, April 10, when I got the text from Brownie:

Have you heard from Allen?

A shock instantly ran through my system. Allen’s absence from the Giants Extra blog had been mentioned a couple times over the months, but most of us hadn’t given it much thought. After all, Allen was known to take extended trips abroad, and many regulars take a break from the blog over the offseason.

But then I realized: spring training has come and gone. We’re almost a week into the new season, and the home opener already happened—and Allen’s a season ticket holder and surely would have been there. Something’s wrong. It took me just a few seconds on Google to figure out the truth, and I texted Brownie back: I have some very sad news…

And then I had to share it with you all on GE, and as hard as that was for all of us, the amazing outpouring of affection and respect that night and into the next few days was a tribute for which any of us would be profoundly grateful when our time comes.

I didn’t know Allen well, and I won’t repeat all of the salient details published in this well-written obituary, so I’ll just reflect upon my brief acquaintance with him, how I/we experienced him as a devoted blog regular, and what the news of his passing—and the response to it on GE–evoked for me.

I spent time with Allen twice, at two games less than a week apart in July 2015. The first time was at an A’s/Giants game on Saturday, July 25, Hunter Pence Gnome Giveaway Day. Allen had wonderful season tickets in Section 118, Rows 23-24, and my husband and I bought two tickets from him to see the game that day (and watch it with him). We got there early to be sure and get our gnomes, had a Bloody Mary at the CF garden bar, and then met up with Allen shortly before game time at the seats. He was not in a happy mood, having had his car broken into and his photography equipment stolen at the game the night before (he’d shared this on the blog that morning). But we still enjoyed a great game, with Bumgarner pitching seven great innings and hitting a homer and Casilla providing some torture at the end. I thought Allen, in person, was just like he seemed on the blog—funny, knowledgeable, blunt. We enjoyed talking to him. I took a couple photos that day; this one shows how great the seats were.

A’s at Giants, July 25, 2015 (the first time we met Allen)

Less than a week later, on Friday July 31, a bunch of us gathered at Raley Field in Sacramento to watch the River Cats play and have a GE outing. Our group included Brownie, Appalled7, Bleacher Bob and his mom Quilter, Mr. Lefty and me, Mooooooooooose and a couple of his kids—and Allen, taking lots of pictures (with his backup equipment, I guess). We had a great time—Appalled7’s Guy™ Kelby Tomlinson stood out, and Josh Osich came into a bases-loaded, none out situation in the eighth and struck out the side and stranded all the runners. A few days later, both guys had been called up to the Giants for the duration. I didn’t take any pictures of our group at that game, sadly, and Allen didn’t post any of his, but here’s a shot from a different game that shows where our seats at Raley Field were. We’re about 13 rows behind the River Cats’ dugout on the 3B side, and you can see the Tower Bridge and Sacramento skyline from the seats.

Raley Field: Matt Cain walking to the mound during a rehab start

Raley Field, June 2015 (BTW, that’s Matt Cain walking to the mound for a rehab start!)

Just a few months later, Allen was suddenly gone, and it was weird for me to realize he’d been gone nearly four months before we all knew it. I experienced grief kind of backwards. When I heard he’d died suddenly on December 20—camera in hand, on a photo shoot with his beloved Audobon Society—I thought about how hard Christmas had to have been for his family. Just a couple weeks before he died, Allen shared on the blog that his wife, not typically a sports fan, had gotten so hooked on the Warriors that she’d agreed to plan their Christmas Day family festivities around watching the Cavaliers-Warriors game on TV.

I didn’t know Allen’s wife Sara or their two 20-something sons, but I remember Allen proudly sharing a year or so earlier when the younger one graduated from UCSD. My own father died suddenly at only 61, and two friends’ husbands died in recent years at ages 60 and 62. So even though I don’t know the family, I’ve seen and felt the pain of young adults knowing that their dad wouldn’t be there for the weddings or the grandchildren and the wives’ sudden loss of the beloved men they’d expected to grow old with.

During this last season, I thought about Allen often, particularly when there was a great home game at AT & T that he surely would have been at—MadBum’s gem on Sunday Night Baseball right before the All-Star Game, rookie Ty Blach staring down Kershaw to keep the Giants’ playoff hopes alive, the epic extra-inning playoff win against the Cubs. And you know he would have had plenty to say about the Warriors’ disastrous final week in June and the Giants’ second half and the way the season ended. I imagine him watching that last game up with Wally Pipp and the guys, screaming at Bochy not to take out Moore or bring in Lopez to face Rizzo or…

Many of us share various aspects of our lives in this blog community—Allen never got to be part of TWG, but he would have loved it—and Allen was unusually generous in that regard. We heard about his wife and sons, about his singing in the church choir, and about his bird-watching with Audobon. Most of all, though, we remember how freely he shared with us his amazing photographic art; it’s still all posted—the travel scenes, the nature shots, the Warriors’ championship parade (he and Sara lived near the parade route in Oakland), the 2010 and 2014 parades, and various epic playoff and World Series games he attended over the three championship runs.

I think what struck many of us about Allen’s passing was how intertwined we regulars at GE/TWG have become in each other’s lives and how hard it hit us when we lost him. Considering how Allen lived his life—to the fullest—the best way we can honor his memory one year later is to follow his example: cherish those nearest to us, follow our passions, and be good to each other in this blog community.

Rest well, Brother Allen. We still miss you. And YourGuy™ Christian Arroyo hasn’t been traded yet, either, just like you ordered.

[1] My initial post with the news was on the game story following the April 10 game against the Dodgers. If you scroll down a ways, you’ll find it, plus all the comments in response. There are more on subsequent days. http://blogs.mercurynews.com/giants/2016/04/10/giants-muscle-cueto-settles-take-three-four-dodgers/

  • HaakAway

    Excellent job Lefty … you captured the moments that we never knew would become so rare.
    As someone said, “Life is fragile, handle with prayer.’

  • PerSpeier35

    Nice Tribute Lefty. I think Allen’s pics were the only time I’d hand over the tablet to my wife when I was doing the Giants blog thing. Loved his stuff. I don’t really remember him commenting that much about the team or other issues that we discuss but I do remember a few times when I saw some bird and not knowing what it was, describing it to Allen and of course getting the correct identification back. Thanks for the great post.

    • Scout Finch Baseball

      The bit about trading Arroyo was true. A certain Fake GM was reprimanded by Allen.

      • PerSpeier35

        Got yourself a talking to, did ya’?

        • Scout Finch Baseball

          The woodshed. Or Woody’s Shed.

      • I remember how red your fanny was that day

  • Scout Finch Baseball

    Superb.

    Allen was an engineer and I recall when he shared some photos of the Tehachapi Loop. That was one of his many things, marvels of engineering.

    http://allenh.zenfolio.com/p578520241/e12e01ec6

  • Bapah

    A+

    • Scout Finch Baseball

      You pull that star down from up here?

      http://allenh.zenfolio.com/p24749426/e2cd72869

      • 610nm

        I hadn’t seen the bear picture before, but remember some of the others on that page. Lefty, your writing above is awesome, and my office seems very dusty this morning. Allen was one of our true gentlemen, and we can all still take that cue from him.

        • Scout Finch Baseball

          Saying that Lefty’s writing is superb is like saying Buster Posey is excellent behind the dish 🙂

          • doobieibood

            But would she write better if she played first and rested her knees?

          • Scout Finch Baseball

            More powerful prose I think.

      • Bapah

        These were some of my favorites of his. Joshua Tree was a class, I think.

  • DrLefty

    Speaking of trades, Ken Rosenthal writes about the Dodgers’ potential trade(s) for a second baseman. The good news is that a trade for Dozier doesn’t appear imminent or even close. (The Dodgers’ willingness to trade Jose DeLeon wouldn’t be enough to lander Dozier.).

    I question, though, Ken’s characterization of the Dodgers being so loaded with starting pitching depth that they could easily spare DeLeon. Yes, they have 10 starters on the major league rosters. Of those ten, though, many are huge injury risks (Hill, Kazmir, Ryu, McCarthy–heck, even Kershaw). Brock Stewart and Ross Stripling–really? You can spare a top-30 pitching prospect because of those guys?

    Behind DeLeon in the pipeline is Cuban Yadier Alvarez (hits 100 on the gun, but whatever) and 2015 Vandy first-rounder Walker Buehler, who has yet to throw a professional pitch because he had TJ surgery after the draft. And some “lesser prospects.”

    If you dig down beneath the surface, you have Kershaw, Maeda, and Urias for the future. Cross your fingers that Hill will stay healthy; cross your fingers that Kazmir and McCarthy will ever be healthy/good again. Maeda isn’t especially durable, and Urias is very young and has to be brought along carefully.

    I see quantity, and yes, quality, but not necessarily stability or durability.

    http://www.foxsports.com/mlb/story/los-angeles-dodgers-prospects-trade-jose-de-leon-notes-122016

    • 610nm

      This seems to be how LA rolls, for a few years. Their fans must be really nervous about Kershaw, who had been their Gibralter. I confess to some concern about Bumgarner, who’s now got quite a few long seasons on his arm. Trading away good young pitchers usually seems dumb further down the road.

    • Scout Finch Baseball

      Looks like Buehler only got in 5 innings of game action last year: 2 at rookie league, and 3 in A ball.

      But I remember reading the reports about how good the stuff looked. That said he still has to climb the ladder and get the work in and won’t help in ’17. Same goes for Alvarez although it is possible he could shoot through the system and help in the pen later in the year.

      Meanwhile, DeLeon is ready to help now. He can be of service in that pen, especially with departure of Blanton.

      Going to be interesting to see what happens, but DeLeon + Verdugo would be hard to pass for Twins.

    • channelclemente

      IMO, Rosenthal frequently has trouble telling firewood from kindling.

      • Scout Finch Baseball

        Oh come on. He does a really good job as a national reporter. He doesn’t have time to be plugged into every detail of every system.

        Dodgers formula of quantity over high quality worked last year.

  • crawnik
    • crawnik

      Good morning from our last day in Coronado. Myself and Mrs. Crawnik hit the road back home in a couple hours.
      Lefty, great piece by you about Allen. I didn’t know him, although I read comments from him while GE was active. Indeed, we must live life to the fullest.
      The number of days until pitchers and catchers report is Big Time Timmy Jim’s uniform number.

      • PerSpeier35

        How many till opening day?

        • 610nm

          April 2nd, at the Snake Pit. Home opener is also against the Diamondbacks, on the 10th. The ATT South opener is April 7th.

        • crawnik

          55 days.

          • crawnik

            Scratch that PS35.

        • crawnik

          103 days til Opening Day.

      • Bapah

        Where did you stay?

        • crawnik

          We stayed in Navy lodging.

  • BALDHEADSLIKK

    Jimmy Rollins signs minor league deal with SFG! No harm here lets see what happens if he’s ever called up for a stretch run.

    • Matthew

      Cool River Cat?

    • Scout Finch Baseball

      I’m sure he he’ll have an opt out clause if he doesn’t surface by June 1, or whatever. He can then latch on elsewhere with a team that suddenly has a need. Or he may find that it’s time to hang up the spikes. I wish the best for J. Roll. It will be cool seeing him in Orange and Black during ST. Sure, a few years too late, but still. He was a player in his prime.

    • IMO he won’t spend time in MiLB. He’s either on the 25 man roster or retires.

  • Scout Finch Baseball

    Love the smell of a baseball trade in the morning:

    Clay Buchholtz to the Phillies.

  • Surf Maui

    Barry Bonds and Roger Clemens are going to be Hall of Famers: Here’s what it means – Yahoo Sports

  • Matthew

    This is a fantastic post….

    • totalfan62

      Dr. Lefty, thank you so much for this wonderful post. Brought back great memories, brought tears to my eyes, touched my heart. Great message for all of us: enjoy what we have, and be sure to tell those we love just how much we love them. Merry Christmas y’all!

      • Alvise Contarini

        I was not so lucky to have known Mr. Allen Hirsch, but reading your posts about him, he should have been a great, humble and friendly, man. We call that special kind of man as “un vero signore”.

  • HaakAway

    https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/0abef752cd883616f4a79bf2af5329f3ba879103cce6e41da87510db4cd75778.jpg
    Funny thing about the photographer as Allen is … you seldom are in the pictures.
    But here is one from his experience at Fantasy Camp. He looks like he has pretty good form.

    • Scout Finch Baseball

      Looks like a baseball card from the early 80’s. Backup catcher? Kind of a Terry Kennedy look to those eyes.

      • HaakAway

        Good call on the look.
        I was going all the way back to Frank Linzy [if my memory serves me right.]

    • Great photo HAAK.

      • HaakAway

        It came from his proud family.
        Thanks for honoring avwh today.

        • DrLefty

          It was your idea–I was just the scribe. So thank YOU.

          • You were more than “just the scribe”. It’s a great article. Thanks Lefty!

          • GiantFrog

            And great scribe work I might add, Lefty. The LA Times had a columnist Jack Smith in the days of Herb Caen and others.. He had a line that I believe is appropriate on this day: “Spend All Your Kisses.”

        • Is there a way to send this post to his family? I am sure they would love it.

    • Much much better than Brian Bocock. Allen was a second sacker by his baseball trade.

  • Keep’n It Real

    Bravo, Lefty! 🙂

  • Matthew

    Today is officially Share Allen Stories Day – thank you so much, Dr. Lefty…you captured him so well, and made many of us cry…

    Let’s pull a Kerr and have a Moment of Joy.

    Allen had posted on GE that he had a few sets of tickets for sale in the 2014 season, and I couldn’t type fast enough. I snagged 3 games for Beauty and I.

    The first of them was a random June game against the DBacks. I hadn’t met Allen yet, had no idea what he looked like. I assumed I had bought his only 2 tickets for the game.

    As we settled in, we were being entertained by a scene in the row in front of us. A man had settled in, with a ritual that only the great die-hard fans would follow. Suddenly , though, a pair of young uninterested millineals were wanting to get to their seats….during the top of the first…during play.

    The man, by himself, leaning forward and studying each pitch (just like I do, and he immediately won my heart) looked to his right with an annoyed glare, huffed and puffed, stood up, muttered, as he tried to peer around the overdressed kids with their designer beers and garlic fries, bags, and various accoutrements, making the interruption more complicated and lengthy than normal. After a few pitches, order was restored.

    “You must be Allen…” I quietly offered. “Yes”.

    We all then talked deep baseball strategy, individual player performance, game management, GE regular acquaintances, family, politics, life….never missing a single moment of game play….

    We met him a couple other games, and all I have to offer is a ringing endorsement of Dr. Lefty’s take. I’m lucky enough to be friends and talk pretty regularly with a few GE/TWG’s, and we have all reminisced regularly about the joy of knowing Allen, albeit for much too short a period.

    Life is precious. Sadly, it’s also fragile. If prayers work, Allen is resting comfortably with the knowledge that his family, and a very large Giants family, keep him close in our hearts. Let’s keep updating him on our beloved Giants until we meet back up with him at Wally Pipp’s Tavern

  • channelclemente

    Although I’d read and chatted here with AVWH before, it never really clicked with me that he was a photographer until one fall (?) he and I (and others) got into a thread about the Christmas Bird Count, a yearly event done nation wide to provide a census and range estimate of the bird species in America. He’d participated several times and referred to his photos. Now I’m not a birder or any kind of expert, but those photo spreads on his website are the work of a man in the middle of a love affair with nature. You can almost see his personality and secret self at work in their composition and color. It isn’t often that a stranger gets a glimpse into another person’s soul.

  • Walter Guest

    Lefty Guest Post huh? I should say right now that we are not related.

  • dgg

    I enjoyed my conversations with Allen. His stunning photographs enriched our lives when he was with us, and still.

    • Scout Finch Baseball

      **co-featured comment of the day**

      Super succinct and 100% in focus.

  • dgg

    Jeff Passan at his scathingly brilliant best. I thought Bonds and Clemens would get into the Hall of Fame when Sleazy Selig was voted in by a secret committee this year. Passan’s take:

    “Because this is the year it is changing, and Bud Selig is to blame. Seriously. It’s almost as if all of Selig’s slippery rhetoric on how baseball didn’t ride performance-enhancing drugs back to relevance after the strike was burbling in a big karmic fireball waiting to fire itself at just the right time.

    In early December, 15 members of the 16-man Today’s Game Era committee voted Selig into the Hall of Fame. And in the minds of some writers who had excluded Bonds and Clemens – each inarguably among the five best hitters and pitchers, respectively, ever to play baseball – the ability to turn them away amid the enshrinement of the man who oversaw the sport felt wrong.”

    http://sports.yahoo.com/news/barry-bonds-and-roger-clemens-are-going-to-be-hall-of-famers-heres-what-it-means-050127788.html

  • steve k

    nice job doctor, and happy one year anniversary in heaven, allen. most people assume that they are put together, as we are in this blog for instance, randomly. i’m not so sure. we have a bunch of really nice people here, and there are some a bit more acerbic. some have manners, and treat folks the way they would like to be treated, while others are nasty, and are ill mannered. i would guess that people that are exactly the same, would make a pretty boring group.

    from my few interactions with allen, he struck me as a salt of the earth type of gentleman. he was extremely intelligent, but never spoke condescendingly to anyone. his photographs were stunning, but he never was a braggart. he was just a member of our blog, just another spoke in our wheel. we are all worse off than we were a year and a day ago. i’m sure i can speak for a great many when i say you are sorely missed allen..

    • 610nm

      AVWH was clearly a perfect gentleman, responding to everyone graciously, and kindly. We all can learn a lesson from that! I think the blog format has a problem with people not realizing that the user handles are also real people, and type things they would never actually say. But we are indeed all actual humans, and politeness goes just as far here as anywhere else in “the real world”.
      The stories of people who write here meeting in real life at a game or somewhere else are always real interesting, and do seem to improve the humanity of this web site. Stories about a house burning down, or a health scare (stay off that ladder, Matthew!), pet stories, music posts, and so on are likewise good for mutual respect for all.

    • Scout Finch Baseball

      i recall one commenter, PSI, that wasn’t a big fan of Allen posting his work. Uhhhhh, what’s your problem, man?

  • I still have Allen’s last email to me. I had sent him a young up and coming photographers portfolio and he took his time responding so he could analyze her work. So his email (allenvwh@msn.com) won’t be deleted anytime soon….

    And one of his best works was: http://allenh.zenfolio.com/p283065044

    • 12xu

      Beautiful photos of the players, fans, sights around AT&T. Thank you for posting, and thank you, Allen.

  • Good thing the Giant Greek aka Greek Giant got his interview in with Amy G. She is leaving. Sadly many here will be happy but not me. I thought she “did her job” and was given a tough assignment. Her interviews got better each year IMO. And she was a devoted mom and significant other to husband Paul.

    Good Luck Amy! http://richliebermanreport.blogspot.com/2016/12/amy-g-leaving-giants-bay-area-goint-to.html

  • Scout Finch Baseball

    Sending this one out to avwh, F-stop Blues…

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MpbGNCmMrEs

  • Scout Finch Baseball

    That would be cool if Jake went back home and stayed in the division.

    http://www.sandiegouniontribune.com/sports/padres/sd-sp-padres-peavy-20161220-story.html

  • Keep’n It Real

    Jon Heyman ‏@JonHeyman 14m14 minutes ago
    giants still like brian dozier & showing some interest. but fit remains imperfect. dodgers have been most persistent on BD

    KIR: I haven’t seen enough of Dozier to comment, but could he play LF or 3B? Maybe that’s what the Giants are thinking.

    • Mr. Sarcastic
      • Keep’n It Real

        If he plays 3rd, you can bet that the Giants will include Arroyo in the trade to get ‘er done.

        • Mr. Sarcastic

          42 home runs helps buy some patience while he learns the position …

    • Scout Finch Baseball

      Who doesn’t like Brian Dozier?

      I find this interest rumor peculiar. Todd Frazier hit 40 HRs too!

      I bet Doze could play LF – so good call. He has enough wheels to swipe 18/20 bags last year. Stole 21/28 in ’14.

      Okay, maybe not so peculiar. Get it the eff done, Evs!

      Oh, wait. It’s gonna be impossible for the Giants to beat any offer the Dodgers put out 🙁

      So back to the peculiar board with me, myself, and I.

      • Keep’n It Real

        Scout…you’re assuming the Smurfs are willing to part with more prospects than the Giants. At the end of the day, it’s who is offering more; regardless of what teams have in their farm system.

        Share that with your 3 personalities 🙂

        • Scout Finch Baseball

          3 to the third power.

          You’re right again!

          Twins may like a package of Beede and Arroyo better than DeLeon and whoever.

          Well me, it’s nice talking to myself again.

          Owe credit to dementia! (sorry, Megadeth lyrics in my head)

    • Only if he remained on his GNC Vitamins

      • Peter Johnson

        He has always has hit for power, sick of your BS !

        • dgg

          Peter, you could have ended your comment with a period after power. The rest of your comment is rude.

          • Peter Johnson

            It was meant to be, I have a problem with Clutch accusing certain players of cheating, they all of 1 thing in common they all are White !

          • dgg

            Well, I think that on this day, Remember Allen Day, civility on the blog should be the order of the day. Allen was always civil in his interactions here. He was a gentleman.

          • Peter Johnson

            Yes he was.

          • So was ‘Dinero’ – who left due to certain fake GM’s and of course Carmot and MLBSF.

          • Really? http://files.mlb.com/mitchrpt.pdf

            I could care less IF somebody is on anything because every decade, every genteration was on ‘something’.
            1) Rafael Palmeiro
            2) BLB
            3) Pudge Rodriquez
            4) Juan Gonzalez
            5) Glenallen Hill
            6) Benito Santiago
            7) Alex Cabrera
            8) Armando Rios
            9) Fernando Vina
            10) Jose Canseco

          • Peter Johnson

            You have no proof, Dozier was on anything , he is a dead pull hitter, a lot like Darrel Evans, so he hits HRs down the line, that do not need to go 400ft, just 335 ft, so no need to be super muscular .

          • channelclemente

            Then TO ought to ring your bell.

          • Scout Finch Baseball

            Isn’t Peter just rude by trade? Count the number of nice things Peter has said.

          • totalfan62

            ergo “this user is blocked”….ain’t got time for that!

          • Keep’n It Real

            ditto

  • Allen would have been so pleased and …. what am I saying – IS SO pleased that Audubon Society bird count was this past Sunday and a double-crested cormorant was spotted fishing during the survey in Berkeley.
    http://www.sfgate.com/bayarea/article/Audubon-Society-hosts-biggest-bird-count-in-the-10804858.php

    As pitchers and catchers report we can all see Allen grabbing his gamer and hollering at Davvy, Bobby Bonds and Zim and saying: “Wanna have a Catch”?

  • DrLefty

    Ryan! Ryan! Here it is! Sickels’ minor league report on the Giants!

    http://www.minorleagueball.com/2016/12/20/14025292/san-francisco-giants-top-50-prospects-for-2017

    • Scout Finch Baseball

      That was quick. He really churned that puppy out. Let’s see the final results…

      • DrLefty

        No A’s and only two B/B+ (Arroyo/Beede), but lots of B-range grades! Overall, I thought it was pretty good and I agreed with most of his rankings. Your Guy Hinojosa caught Sickels’ eye.

        • Scout Finch Baseball

          I didn’t totally agree, but I always respect his work.

          thought Slater, Coonrod, and Cole deserved more more lauds.

          Ty Blach sure shot up the list. He was a perennial C+, back of the list guy.

          • totalfan62

            Love looking over this list and all the players/names. Great head start on MyGuy 2017! I agree on Coonrod–I get a really good feeling about that guy. I’m also a big Joan Gregorio fan.

  • channelclemente

    The NFL has almost become sports porn. The Security guard of you dreams… http://www.dailydot.com/irl/security-guard-caught-masturbating-at-chargers-game/

    • Keep’n It Real

      I was holding off on posting this on Allen’s tribute, but it is newsworthy. Another example of how differently people are wired (security guard)…

    • channelclemente

      AVWH would have loved this story, just loved it.

  • Footy will dissect Black Ray aka Ray Black but I believe he one of Lefty’s guys.

    http://www.foxsports.com/mlb/story/san-francisco-giants-a-role-for-ray-black-in-2017-121916

  • Alvise Contarini
    • paul in p.v.

      Beautiful song too! Grazie!!

  • ….. as Baggs use to say……”a little dark in here”….

    • steve k

      good morning, sir. how are you feeling today?

    • Scout Finch Baseball

      Hey, back on line!

      The Greek Giant is one heck of a mechanic!

  • DrLefty

    We’re back! I wanted to talk about these Dozier rumors…is there any chance Evans is thinking of trading Panik + plus pitching (or maybe + Shaw or Reynolds) for Dozier?

    If it’s a straight prospect trade and the Dodgers are serious, the Giants can’t match up. But if the Giants headline with Panik–a Gold Glover, an All-Star, a World Series hero, a former first-rounder–they might have the advantage. Panik is also 26, still pre-arb, and comes with four more years of team control.

    It would be a very win-now type move for the Giants. I can’t rule it out.

    • Scout Finch Baseball

      I guess it can’t be ruled out, especially the way Matt Duffy was sent off.

      How about Beede plus Reynolds and Blackburn beating out the DeLeon plus lesser others package?

      • Scout Finch Baseball

        also noteworthy is that the Twins spent some time scouting Giants personnel prior to the Nunez trade.

      • DrLefty

        That would hurt but I would do it. Beede may have some cache being a #14 pick and from Vanderbilt. Same with Reynolds regarding Vandy, and he was considered a steal from the Giants’ second-round spot.

        Maybe it’s because I watched Beede so much last season on MiLB.TV, but I hold a higher view of his ceiling than Sickels does. I see him as a #2-3 pitcher, not a back-end guy. He’s the total package, especially in 2016 (less so in his Richmond stint in the last half of 2015): poise, dramatically improved command, four pitches, innings-eater with something in the tank at the end of the game. I still can’t forget the three 98 MPH pitches in the ninth inning of his penultimate start, a 2-hit shutout with 11 Ks (and only 1 BB)–on August 29 at the end of a full season (nearly 150 IP).

        Beede’s makeup also appears to be off the charts, and I can imagine him really blossoming with the guidance of Buster, the pitching coaches, and guys like MadBum and the other veteran starters.

        • DrLefty

          I think I just talked myself out of trading Beede, even for Dozier.

          • 12xu

            OMG, Beede in the starting rotation next season! Thanks for the scouting report. If he doesn’t make the club out of spring training, do you think we see him called up at some point next season?

          • DrLefty

            No space for him. He’ll be in AAA next year–ready if there’s an injury or if Cueto leaves us after 2017 (sob).

    • dgg

      Alex says he’s “aware of the rumor” re: Dozier but he hasn’t heard a word, presumably from inside the Giants organization.

      I don’t see how the Giants could trade Panik now after Melancon’s praise of (and need for, as a groundball pitcher) our Gold Glove middle infield.

      p.s. Thanks for your tweet yesterday, Lefty, about the blog being down. Helpful and good follow through!

      • DrLefty

        You’re welcome. 🙂

    • Keep’n It Real

      I personally feel this would be a dumb move *if* Panik is involved.

      Dozier has never won a GG, has a lifetime BA of .246, and magically jumped up 14 HRs last season. Target Field is also a much easier place to hit (although he was 21HRs “away”).

      Lastly, I think this sends a bad message to the team. First you trade Duffy, the Panik? If those two get traded, you’ll have people looking over their shoulder and wondering “Am I next?”, instead of playing “we’re a family” Giants baseball.

      I’m OK with Dozier at 3B…even f it has to include Arroyo (hopefully not Beede)…but “no bueno” if Panik is involved.

      • dgg

        Memo to Giants: Keep Panik. Keep Arroyo.

        • paul in p.v.

          I don’t even like SPECULATING a trade of Panik. Not after the Duffy gut-kick.

          But if you can swallow the unPresident, I reckon you can get used to anything.

      • DrLefty

        I did some research on Dozier. Obviously he’s not a GG like Panik, but he’s also not a defensive liability. In terms of overall value, he was the third-best 2B in the majors in 2016 and over the last three seasons, 2014-16–behind Altuve and Cano.

        Dozier is 29, a RH power hitter, and signed to a very reasonable contract that will pay him $15 mil. through 2018.

        Dozier would be a tremendous add for the Giants–or the Dodgers. I don’t see how the Giants get him without trading Panik, but if somehow they could, maybe Dozier can play LF?

        • crawnik

          If Dozier can play LF without trading Panik, I’m in.

      • Efrain

        You were mking a good point and lost me (and I assume some other smart folks on this blog) with the whole “instead of playing “we’re a family” Giants baseball.” What are you, five years old?!?!

        Seriously players play because they are professionals, do you think the Giants would be the first team to trade away valuable assets and team favorites? Even the Yankees in their recent past always changed pieces around their core guys. Its a profession with professionals, not a family or cub scout troupe.

        • Keep’n It Real

          You also assumed that you are considered one of the”smart folks on this blog”; which you aren’t.

          Nice try.

          • Efrain

            lol, from you that’s a compliment.

          • Keep’n It Real

            In Efrain bizarro world, perhaps. Not in the real world.

    • I just made that trade 🙁

    • channelclemente

      Nothing about such a trade gives the Giants anything superior to what they have. Why would one trade to achieve the status quo.

      • Mr. Sarcastic

        42 HR is not status quo…

        • channelclemente

          Here? And 42 HR doesn’t necessarily mean anything. He hit that once in his career. Steamer has him projected at 27. That sort of projection is what, IMO, you build the guess on. Besides, his splits L/R suggest he can be had by RHP as well.

          https://i.imgur.com/8qlpf0L.png

          • Mr. Sarcastic

            Still, that’s almost triple of what we got from Joe Panik last year (I realize he missed some games). I like Panik but from a cold observer’s perspective beefing up the power at that position is tempting, especially since nothing seems to be happening on the LF front.

          • Alvise Contarini

            How’s Dozier defense?

          • Mr. Sarcastic

            He was 4th in the AL with a .989 FPCT

          • channelclemente

            If you look at the other fielding metrics UZR150, Inside Edge, etc, Dozier is just Joe average. With a FPCT that high, it usually means he gets to ones he should, joe average 2B. He’s not Panik, but he won’t embarrass himself either.

          • Mr. Sarcastic

            Just trying to get a little pop in the lineup. Will anyone crack 20 this year?

          • channelclemente

            After coming up on 10 years of effort, mostly wasted, IMO, we should concentrate on hitters with power, and not power hitters. I’m not intending to discount Dozier, just be fair and honest about what he would bring to a team like the Giants. IMO, another LD hitter like Pence, maybe, makes the most sense.

          • channelclemente

            I don’t think it adds a single win. And although I didn’t show it, Doziers LD, HR/Fly ball numbers suggest he’s become a backspiner, upcut/loft hitter. To me, that just reeks Aaron Rowand, a guy who depends on loft for his power. IMO, that’s the kiss of death at AT&T. Just my take on a romantic but pointless deal. Maybe the experts on the Giants see something different, but the guys BABIP is 30 points below league average, so he ‘ain’t no contact hitter’.

          • The Oracle

            Which year was it that Rowland hit 42 HRs? For a smart guy, you say some strange things.

          • channelclemente

            It’s hard to comp a wild assed guess about the future.

          • The Oracle

            Yes. Steamer is certainly more accurate than real life results.

          • channelclemente

            Beats the hell out of a wild ass guess, you know, like he’ll ever hit 40+ again. Contrary to your comment, tomorrow hasn’t happened yet. Do you pass or hold on hitting snake eyes. LOL.

          • The Oracle

            Steamer had Duvall at 30 HR and 100 RBI last year, right?

      • The Oracle

        Nothing except a whole bunch more power.

        • PerSpeier35

          And better righty/lefty balance.

    • Noce

      I’m wondering if the Giants brass think there is some limit to Panik and future results.

  • Scout Finch Baseball

    I wonder if this means that Metallica won’t be doing national anthems anymore. While old school metallica rocks, I much prefer Dave Mustaine and Megadeth – a smarter version of metal.

    http://www.sfgate.com/entertainment/article/James-Hetfield-moved-to-quiet-Colorado-to-10808564.php

  • earlytimes

    Is this Dozier source the same as the one that had Pablo returning to SF?

    • dgg

      I don’t think so. The Pablo rumor was from a Red Sox reporter, wishful thinking on his part, I believe. The Dozier rumor is from Jon Heyman.

  • DrLefty

    Oh, BTW, Amy G. says the story about her moving to CT is false.

    https://twitter.com/AmyGGiants/status/811331385315053568

    • channelclemente

      So she’s not singing at Trump’s inauguration after all.

    • Fake News and Bad sources

    • The Oracle

      Why did they have to get my hopes up?

      • PerSpeier35

        That guy Lieberman was mad at Amy because she didn’t donate to his web site.

  • channelclemente

    Physics in a Tea Cup. The world in a cup of tea, sort of.

    http://www.motherjones.com/environment/2016/12/physics-tea-cup-inquiring-minds

  • Mr. Sarcastic

    Henry Schulman Tweeted out the early ESPN Sunday Night Baseball schedule. Gotta love it:

    Cubs/Cards
    Fish/Mets
    Cards/Yankees
    Nats/Mets
    Cubs/Red Sox
    Yankees/Cubs
    Astros/Yankees
    Mets/Pirates
    Cards/Cubs

    Good to know there are only 3 teams in MLB worth televising…

    • steve k

      i wonder if MLB will ever expand west of the mississippi?

      • channelclemente

        In fits and starts as reported by the pony express.

    • Noce

      ESPN viewership and subscriptions are down some 7 million plus over the last four years. There is a lot of discussion in the financial press how ESPN is a drag on Disney results. This might be a strategy to focus on core markets. I wonder if there is an overall movement away from watching sports? Recent examples of the NFL audience and the problems at ESPN might be an sport industry trend.

      • Mr. Sarcastic

        It sure looks like ESPN is trying to save gas money by having the production truck stick to the Eastern time zone. Some of those games look like good match-ups, but the NY and CHI overkill is a bit much.

        I have watched a lot less NFL this year, that’s for sure. Between the putrid product that the 49’ers put on display each week, along with the sucky games featured on MNF and TNF there is no compelling reason to tune in. Once the playoffs start my interest will pick up a bit I’m sure.

      • Efrain

        Movement away from watching sports? you must be kidding right? the reason viewership ESPN is having issues is that younger people (30 >) don’t catch their sports news and games on TV like the older generations and many don’t even bother with cable, which espn is tied to. They stream on their phones, tablets and other such sources and many games can be caught for free. I watch Giants and DUBs games streamed online free without any “packages”, it’s all out there to see as needed.

        • Noce

          Then why are the numbers down on the NFL?

          • Efrain

            to be honest I have not been following the NFL as much because of the recent situation with the 9ers and because the Giants and Dubs take more of my attention.

            However, as a sports fan and career marketing professional I can lend a couple of thoughts:

            1) I think people still watch the NFL just not as much on network TV. In NYC there are bars everywhere taken over by fans of non NY teams for weekly get togethers and fantasy league events. I also assume many of these younger individuals fall on the “never watch TV at home” category.
            2) I think the NFL is suffering from lack of parity – with the exception of stories like the Raiders and Cowboys, the NFL is a story of haves and have nots. Also the NFL has focused a great deal over the past few years on the international market, perhaps forgetting about target segments at home.
            3) The success of the NBA is the marketing of players over team to the youths, why you go into arenas around the country and see CURRY fans in jersies, NOT necessarily WARRIORS fans. In the NFL if your team has absolutely no chance, the fan base becomes disinterested in the whole.

          • Noce

            A number of years ago a friend of mine asked me to help out a project with retired players. I was working with Marv Hubbard on a legends project but got slammed down by NFL properties because they own the image of these players. Imagine your image is owned and you have to pay the NFL a royalty if you use it to endorse a product. Now I am guessing much of that might have changed. But it shows the “RollerBall” mentality of the NFL. Teams not players were important. So I agree with your analysis on the promotion or lack there of, their stars.

    • Alvise Contarini

      New York (Mets & Yankees) 6 out of 9, Chicago 4 out of 9, St. Louis 3 out of 9. California doesn’t exist.

      • Efrain

        it has more to do about the time difference in the games than any California slight. You really think the Dodgers and the Giants would not be there otherwise?

    • Surf Maui

      I love it. Not only are we spared the late Sunday night travel, but we get to listen to our announcers. Win-Win as far as I can see.

  • Alvise Contarini

    Can’t access directly TWG site, but only through Disqus. GG, I need help, please

    • channelclemente

      You must be on a cyber watch list in Russia.

      • Alvise Contarini

        I’m using a VPN server in San Francisco now….

        • channelclemente

          Then a cyber watch list in the Castro. you’ve pissed on their coffee sensibilities enough.

          • Alvise Contarini

            I noticed that the accuracy of your information is a direct function of the location of my VPN server.

          • channelclemente

            I’m fungible.

          • Alvise Contarini

            Me expendable.

          • channelclemente

            I’m culpable.

          • Alvise Contarini

            Excusatio non petita, culpa manifesta.

          • Alvise Contarini

            I use their cuban “ron” in my “sailor’s coffee”. (1 part ron, 3 parts coffee)

  • channelclemente

    THE CHRISTMAS BIRD COUNT is underway. AVWH is smiling some where. A short look at the event, and it’s nuts and bolts.

    http://fivethirtyeight.com/features/christmas-is-bird-counting-season-for-60000-americans/

  • channelclemente
  • channelclemente

    The 2016 Cubs compared to the 1997 Marlins as a model of baseball team accretion. The big question, I suppose, is does the narrative continue down that path.

    http://fivethirtyeight.com/features/the-2016-cubs-won-just-like-the-1997-marlins-did/

  • Alvise Contarini
  • channelclemente
    • Mr. Sarcastic

      I almost wish I lived outside the area so I could watch Giants games on MLB.tv. Then I could truly cut the cord and not miss anything important to me …

      • channelclemente

        Spend that ~$4 and month and get VPN (Virtual Public Network) access and you can. You can then ‘live’ just about anywhere in the world.

        • Alvise Contarini

          Yep, now I’m in Moscow.

          • channelclemente

            Bad vodka. All the good stuff is in Poland.

          • channelclemente
          • Mr. Sarcastic

            He’s not

          • channelclemente

            Meme pirate! Of course he’s not. This is his personal evolution of that old movie Breaking Away.

          • Alvise Contarini

            Now I’m writing from Honk Kong. Using a Czech Software: Avast VPN.

          • Alvise Contarini

            Me Alvise, not Dave. And no use of a bike in Venice. If you come to Venice just whistle and you will find that I’m a real “serenissimo”. See you at Caffè Florian. They serve excellent tea too.

          • Alvise Contarini

            I’d better leave for Oregon. Wait…….

          • Matthew

            A whole new meaning of Putin-esca

          • Senor Contarini! How are you? I will be visiting Venice in May to see the Biennale! I want to meet you! If you are free in the third week of May let’s have a glass of vino together somewhere! You can write me through the form on the contact page on this site.
            Ciao.

        • Mr. Sarcastic

          Sounds good, but why wouldn’t everyone do this? MLB and every other regionally restricted service hasn’t figured this out yet?

          • channelclemente

            You got me. Sometimes you have to be creative on country choice, but it worked for me. MLB is on thin ice with their blackout policy anyway. You still have to subscribe to MLB, so they get their cut of the pie.

          • Bapah

            I’ve been doing it for 6 years, but I’ve used a proxy server; I’m trying a VPN this year.

  • channelclemente
  • Take a listen to Ernie Johnson for less than 15 min https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EbSruekaGVs

    • GSDUbs

      Can you name the other 2 Warriors in the pic?

      • Fred Hetzel and the Destroyer Alvin Attles….

        • GSDUbs

          Correct on one, not on the other

          • GSDUbs

            Sorry, you’re right…confused Attles with Fritz Williams

          • Ron Fritz Williams was taller than Alvin and Fritz wore 21

          • GSDUbs

            Yeah…not used to seeing Attles not wearing some sorta bandage on his leg(s)

          • RIP at age (only) 59

          • GSDUbs

            Oh my, didnt realize that

          • BALDHEADSLIKK

            Hey not all of us look alike friend lololol!

          • GSDUbs

            Oh man, you just killed me with that!

          • BALDHEADSLIKK

            😄😄😄

        • I was a fan of Hetzels, thought he was an average player. Attles on the other hand would take on Zelmo Beatty and Walt Bellamy….

          • GSDUbs

            Hetzel was a statue but he could shoot

        • BALDHEADSLIKK

          packed house in the arena

  • Scout Finch Baseball

    And together we’re back?

    • Shhhh………. Baggs was just seen being taken away in hand-cuffs …

  • Scout Finch Baseball

    Enjoyed this Schulman tweet regarding Dozier:

    https://twitter.com/hankschulman/status/811643665856663553

    • DrLefty

      I have to say that was my first thought, but I suspected the Giants, not the Twins (to drive the price up for the Dodgers).

  • The Oracle

    For some unknown, Ralph Sampson is in the Warriors’ team Hall of Fame.

    • I believe he dated Franklin Meuli’s daughter

  • March 9th 1996 – the Lead Scout and Cross checker’s report card for then 18 year old Jimmy Rollins

    https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/82d60f3b9fc82ae5520fdca430a50c29ee4eb660ba77714a66894788dbe3e851.jpg

  • Scout Finch Baseball

    Dodgers and Twins at “impasse”.

    Dozier’s HR progression from 2013-16: 18, 23, 28, 42.

    For a guy that blasted 42 dingers, it’s quite impressive that his K rate was average or slightly below league average. The same can be said for Edwin Encarnacion. Where will he land?

    http://www.fanragsports.com/mlb/heyman-dodgers-twins-standstill-dozier-trade-talks/

    • LAD will have a Dozier-Dodger-Dog on the menu

      • Matthew

        I just did one of those “verps” imagining Charlie Steiner say just that….

      • Scout Finch Baseball

        Either that or Chase Utley returneth, with mustard.

    • earlytimes

      And this guy was no Duvall in the minors. Just 16 hrs in 4 seasons. (1400 ab’s). He looked more like Adrianza in RK ball with 0 hrs in 232 ab’s..

  • Wally Pipp

    Allen got a kick about this from Doctor Southpaw wrote – (“During this last season, I imagine him watching that last game up with Wally Pipp and the guys, screaming at Bochy not to take out Moore or bring in Lopez to face Rizzo or…”)

    Allen is now our one and only salaried photographer. What some of the other guys passed off as quality work was not very good and we had an intervention to rectify the issue. His celestial angles and keen sense of dedication means now that we are enjoying what you all had for a glorious 62 years. Allen is also now playing third base for The Kingdom Nine. We have a young whipper-snapper with more range at second so – so typical of avwh – he is now at the hot corner, showing off his strong arm and fast reflexes.

  • Matthew

    Some spirited debate on the thought of swapping out Panik (plus others) for Dozier.

    Dozier would obviously provide power to the lineup beyond what Panik provides. To me, Panik does have sneaky pop, and if he stays healthy ( I know, I know….big “if”) he can slay 20+ per season.

    But, I will continue to be that annoying guy that reminds you: this team is built out from the bump, with much of that being pitch-to-contact (hello, Melancon) that relies on superior infield defense.

    Crawford and Panik up the middle are the cornerstones to that philosophy.

    I don’t see it happening.

    • Bapah

      Just keep thinking of the DPs those two have pulled off. I seem to recall some post-season spectaculars, as well.

    • Scout Finch Baseball

      Rosterbating with a Panik trade is like using sandpaper, if you catch my drift.

      Giants fans may as well be conjuring trades for Jose Fernandez.

    • BALDHEADSLIKK

      Sneaky pop? love ya bro but i like “pop”!

    • Sgbssfg

      Have barely gotten over the Duffy trade.

  • paul in p.v.
    • Scout Finch Baseball

      You’re like really in the city, like up in a high rise and stuff. I’d think Mexico would be the place to be right now. Like in the Corona commercial with the lights strung way up top the palma.

      • paul in p.v.

        Our little condo on First Hill looks down on the skyscrapers. It’s cool.

        After a decade of Christmases in MX – it’s nice to be here. We’re lucky.

        • SurfCity

          I’ve never seen Coronas being quaffed the few times I went to Mexico. Of course I didn’t usually go to tourist spots where I suppose they have it.

          • paul in p.v.

            Depends on where you visited – the beer market tends to be carved up between distributers. Corona is ubiquitous in P.V.

  • SurfCity

    Hey all, never had the pleasure of meeting Allen in person. I thought his photos were really nice and I know he really enjoyed taking them. I remember a few go-arounds we had over the merits of anti-tobacco regulations and other political issues. (We didn’t agree on much politically.) But I always appreciated his passion if not his bluntness 😉

  • DrLefty

    The Warriors have excused Bob Fitzgerald from the road trip so that he can be home with his children over Christmas, with his wife Carol having recently passed away. Tim Roye, the radio PxP announcer, will call the Dec. 22-23 games on TV with Jim Barnett. The Christmas Day game is on national TV.

    The Warriors are a class organization. I read that they encouraged Fitz to skip the trip and be with his family.

    • SurfCity

      Yeah I heard that too. Really nice that’s happening.

      • DrLefty

        Not a fan of Fitz’s work, but I’ll never badmouth him again. Poor guy. He’s been through hell and still has a tough road ahead.

        • SurfCity

          Same here, not a big fan, but that’s irrelevant in this particular case.

  • SurfCity

    Don’t know about anyone else, but I’m putting my foot down: I will not stand for another day of the days getting shorter!

    https://www.google.com/search?q=winter+solstice+2016&rlz=1C1AOHY_enUS708US708&oq=winter+sol&aqs=chrome.1.0l5j69i57.5674j0j4&sourceid=chrome&ie=UTF-8

    😉

    • DrLefty

      Good for you. So we can expect some progress tomorrow, I take it?

      • SurfCity

        Yes, we’re turning a corner!

  • dgg

    The mystery continues…

    Did Baggarly’s Twitter Bio ever say he covers the San Francisco Giants for the San Jose Mercury News? If so, that’s not what his bio says now. Alex and Hank identify themselves as Giants beat reporters with their employer’s name.

    Alex’s Twitter Bio: “Covers the San Francisco Giants for CSN Bay Area” with links provided to his Facebook page, Podcast, and Blog.

    Hank Schulman’s Twitter Bio: ‘Giants beat writer for the San Francisco Chronicle. Proud to be on the overexposed trail with mlb network and KNBR. Verified in my own heart — and Twitter’s.”

    Baggarly’s Twitter Bio: “journalist • author • broadcaster • commentator • mlb press box denizen. In the words of Trebek: solid.”

    • SurfCity

      That’s interesting. For what it’s worth, the Merc switched beat writers for the Warriors prior to this season. The new beat writer is much better.

      • dgg

        It’s puzzling.

        • SurfCity

          Has there been other things going on that make you think he’s not the writer anymore? I know his twitter feed has been dark for a while.

          • dgg

            Mostly what’s not going on on his Twitter feed. No winter meetings coverage, no Melancon news or stories, no reports of Giants minor league deals. Alex was the only Giants beat reporter at the Winter Meetings this year. Hank wasn’t there but he was still tweeting news and linking to John Shea (who was there for the Chronicle) and writing stories. Dan Brown was there from the Merc, covering both the Giants and the A’s, which is what Baggarly did last year.

          • DrLefty

            He also replied to a Tweet in November–a week or so after saying he was “going dark”–saying that he’s no longer doing the Giants coverage for Baseball America, as he has for the past 12 years.

            The “vacation”–he said he was “going dark for a few weeks” started Nov. 10. Today is Dec. 22. That’s a long vacation. Missing the Winter Meetings may have been because BANG only wanted to send one reporter and it was Brown’s turn after Baggs went last year. But in my opinion, the Twitter bio is the most interesting–no mention of BANG or the Giants or even baseball (just “journalist”), no link to his SJMN coverage, just to a personal website (and the link to it doesn’t work). That leads me to think you’re right and something’s up. Either he’s quit or been fired or maybe neither yet but he’s looking for a new job.

          • Scout Finch Baseball

            I certainly hope he’s alright. Perhaps this is the time for his next great opportunity. He’s a smart guy and a excellent writer. Maybe he’ll be following the Wendy Thurm path and getting away from baseball. But he does have those BBWAA credentials, which are not easy to come by.

          • DrLefty

            I think his work is highly regarded in the field (and rightfully so)–I’ve seen good national writers (e.g., Buster Olney, Jeff Passan, Tyler Kepner, Ken Rosenthal, etc.) refer to him with enthusiasm. I also remember that the baseball writers supported him 100% when the Giants players boycotted him a couple years ago (the “Romo incident”). So you’d think he’d have the contacts for a job change if he’s pursuing one.

          • Andres The Forever Giant

            I’ve felt for awhile that Baggs wants to go back home and write for the Cubs, now that they’re finally good!

      • DrLefty

        I really like Anthony Slater! I hear him on KNBR, too. I used to not even bother to read the Merc’s coverage except for the Fastbreak blog or if Carl happened to be covering. I’d just read Ethan Strauss’s coverage and Adam’s write-up.

        It’s still hard to read anything on the Merc because the new platform has so many annoying loading problems, but sometimes I will persist and read Anthony’s game stories.

        • SurfCity

          Yes, Slater has it going on pretty good so far.

      • And Conor actually goes to games

    • 610nm

      Merry Christmas, dgg. I believe AB’s position after returning to the SJMN was always listed as BANG with some of his feature stories labeled as coming from some of their other smaller papers. I do not look at the tweets of anyone except as they appear at the sides of blogs, so don’t know what it said there half a year ago. Nor do I remember what sort of bio he had on BANG’s web site after the GE blog was blown up.

    • when the Merc went to a weird blog 4mat Baggs changed his blog Bio

  • Walter Guest

    My favorite quote. From one of Fred Astair’s partners. Something like this: “I have to do all the same steps…except backwards…wearing heels.”

  • Scout Finch Baseball

    Matthew’s featured comment is a great way to see who’s been visiting the blog. It’s almost incriminating to not be listed beneath the up-arrow.

    I see you…

    https://thebaseballcodes.files.wordpress.com/2012/08/ramirez-i-see-you.jpg

    • DrLefty

      Well, in fairness, the blog went down twice for lengthy periods since this post went up. People may have tried to get on, given up and not checked back yet. And it IS the offseason. And some people never “up arrow” anything–just their way!

      • Scout Finch Baseball

        I think Matthew just about got em all 🙂

    • paul in p.v.

      I’ve been avoiding saying this – but the guy wasn’t St. Allen to everybody. Altho I always praised his photos (and voted for them in contests), he pounded me a few times (for political reasons) in a nasty way, so I just avoided him. Getting a bit tired of the beatitudes.

      And that Hanly pictures bites the big one.

      • Scout Finch Baseball

        I know Lo Viste bites the big one. And thank you for going against the grain. Courageous in your own way.

        When Mateo said that he and Allen were talking some politics, I knew what he was talking about. Yep, I remember that vibe as well. We’re complicated creatures and Allen was raised a certain way as were Matthew and Noce and whoever else may not be on the Anti-Trump wagon.

        I’m with Steve Kerr.

        • paul in p.v.

          Gracias Foots. Everybody on this blog is different. To me, the Saint just never sent the elevator back. As far apart as I am politically from T.O. – he never gets personal – he just enjoys the argument.

          • Scout Finch Baseball

            The Oracle is an interesting bird. Yes, he enjoys having some sport on the blog after a hard day’s night.

      • DrLefty

        I respect your feelings. Most of us aren’t “St. Whoever” to everyone, though…

        I remember when my dad passed and we were at his memorial service. They had an open mic portion and all these people I didn’t know stood up and said wonderful things about him. I remember one was the waitress at the coffee shop where he and some of his buddies had breakfast every week, and she was in tears about how kind and generous he always was towards her. It was eye-opening, in a good way.

        My dad was a complicated man and my relationship with him was very difficult at points (same with my two siblings). I wouldn’t say he was Father of the Year. In fact, my husband had a hard time dealing with my grief about my dad’s death because he had seen firsthand how some of those dynamics screwed me up as a young wife and mother.

        At the same time, those positive stories were real, too. People are usually neither all good nor all bad. You’d hope that people would be generous in their recollections when our time is up.

  • Scout Finch Baseball

    Merry Christmas Pirates fans. Your team just signed Ivan Nova to a 3 year 26 mil deal. 

    • DrLefty

      Maybe not so merry. The rumors yesterday had them hot after trading for Quintana. Nova isn’t quite like getting a lump of coal, more like getting underwear when you wanted a bike.

      • Scout Finch Baseball

        Reported that they are still after Quintana. That would be dumb if they gave up Meadows or Glasnow – or maybe even Bell.

  • Scout Finch Baseball
    • DrLefty

      I wouldn’t say he showed much enthusiasm about being with the Giants. Pretty much just that it gives him a chance to win again (which you could say about a number of teams). He understands there isn’t an opportunity at SS for him with the Giants, he doesn’t especially see himself playing anywhere but SS…so basically, he’s hoping Crawford gets hurt, or…what? (And if Crawford gets hurt, there isn’t going to be any second ring for Rollins from the Giants.).

      You’d expect some props to the organization or that he’s happy to play with Pence again or that Bochy’s great or…something. But no. Just a little nod to the “buzz” at the ballpark, like when he was with Philly in their good years.

  • Scout Finch Baseball
    • Scout Finch Baseball

      ‘“Put yourself in someone else’s shoes and look at it from a bigger perspective,” he said. “We live in this complex world of gray areas. Life is so much easier if it could be black and white, good and evil.”

      Providing commentary on the state of today’s politics and culture is not a prerequisite for Kerr’s job. There are sports fans, maybe the majority of them, who wish athletes and coaches would keep their nonsports opinions to themselves — stand for the anthem, be thankful for your good fortune, express only humility, and provide little but smiles and autographs.’

      I don’t know if it was courage when Kerr spoke up post-election, but I appreciated the heck out of it.

      • DrLefty

        I guess when you’ve already been through what he has–that harrowing story about getting out of Beirut to go back to college, hearing that his father had been murdered–you realize how short life can be and what really matters.

        I continue to hope for a return to full health for him because he’s a treasure, and I’d like to see him coaching in the NBA for many more years and enjoying his life and family, too.

      • The Oracle

        That’s an ironic quote for you to choose since, in this political season, you’ve had trouble doing that yourself.

        • Scout Finch Baseball

          I guess I’m not seeing the irony. So I’m not sure what your point is. I have no problem taking a position in someone else’s shoes, but that doesn’t mean I would agree with the stance.

          Are you a Manichean kind of guy?

    • Matthew

      You didn’t??? Oh my. It’s a huge part of what makes him the incredibly perceptive’ non-judgmental leader that he is. His perspective is as fresh as they come.

      We always tend to group coaches and rate them against each other….”Kerr is better than Harbaugh…” and so on. What strikes me is that Steve Kerr is a unique human being who happens to coach a sport…. he can’t be categorized

    • DrLefty

      That’s a great piece. I’ve read lengthy articles about Kerr before, but this one had new details and new insights about him. Thanks for sharing the link. I just passed it on to Mr. L and my brother.

    • Walter Guest

      I was in Beirut before Steve Kerr was born. They bragged that they were the model for Muslims, Christians and Jews living together in harmony. Then came Arafat.

      • channelclemente

        You too? It’s not the Riviera of the Eastern Mediterranean anymore, sadly.

    • 2holehitting

      That was an excellent article to read. Thanks for posting it.

  • DrLefty

    New manager and hitting coach for Richmond; Steve Kline returns for his third season as pitching coach. Gotta think Kline is in the pipeline for when Righetti decides he’s done.

    https://twitter.com/burnham_jay/status/811950291063046144

    • channelclemente

      I’d put a little money on Ray Searage with Pirates currently. Vogelsong speaks very highly of him, and that staff has done a few miracles. He also presided over the rebirth of Melancon.

  • Sorry for the down time TWGers. I wan to quote the immortal words of Han Solo in The Empire Strikes Back when he proclaims innocence as the Millenium Falcon’s hyperdrive malfunctions: “It’s not my fault”. Our hosting service, Godaddy, had some major system-wide problems that affected thousands of websites. This will be rectified quickly and we will minimize down time in the future, Mays willing!

    • paul in p.v.

      Gracias for all of your hard work in keeping us ‘up’ GG.

      Mele Kalikimaka!

    • channelclemente

      Thanks for the explanation. We’d go int withdrawal convulsions without our daily Giants flybys and comments.

  • Thank you DrLefty for a remembering Allen in such a great guest post. When I met Allen I didn’t know who he was. We were both taking pics of the Candlestick demolition and had a brief conversation. When he posted a link to his pictures on the blog I realized who I had been talking to at the Stick. He gave me some good photo tips and I learned more from looking at his pics and the camera settings he used.

    I don’t post often, but read the blog and comments all the time. Thanks to those of you who do post. And a huge thanks to GG for putting all this together.

    • HaakAway

      Hello “cousin” … good words.
      Every story like yours is medicine to the hearts of Allen’s family and they do appreciate it. They have been aware of this post coming and seeing it is a part of how they are handling it.

  • DrLefty

    Fascinating article about whether Curt Schilling has “tweeted himself out of Cooperstown.” The writer says Schilling is now more polarizing among HOF voters than Bonds or Clemens!

    http://www.espn.com/mlb/story/_/id/18326987/controversy-surrounding-curt-schilling-clouds-cooperstown-case-hall-fame-voters

    • HaakAway

      Probably his opinions outside of baseball are effecting his HOF chances but that is not the way I would want it in a better baseball world. Rising above that is admittedly hard and I speak from experience/failures on that front.

      • DrLefty

        The article explains that Schilling was always a borderline case for the Hall. It also reports that voters have said his political commentary work didn’t enter their thinking at all. It’s a single tweet, right after the election, where he appeared to approve the idea of lynching journalists, that seems to be the problem. He took it down and claims he was joking, but considering his fairly extreme views, no one believes him. The exit polling on this year’s HOF vote suggests he’s lost substantial support since last year.

        The existence of social media does cast all of this in a different light than previous generations of baseball stars. What if Ted Williams had Twitter, or Babe Ruth, or Mickey Mantle? You would hope the modern affordances wouldn’t factor into the voting, but it is what it is.

        • HaakAway

          Some things do not change and human nature is one of them … his bad tweeter work effects voters no matter what people say.

          • Noce

            Since the election there is a lot of conversation about social media. A BBC show talked about certain news outlets banning the comments section on articles. There is a link on Big Think about why to not comment on tweeter or FB. The link raises some interesting points. For athletics and celebs it should be about building their brand. So in general they might want to think about what that brand represents.

        • Scout Finch Baseball

          That Schilling sure is Trumpian. I’m sure he could win public office somewhere.

          • DrLefty

            Ugh, I hope not.

      • Noce

        It’s not just opinions, I think it’s more about attacking the press who do the voting. Ron Santos had much the same problem. If your surely with the press and don’t have overwhelming numbers your chances are limited. Shilling has always been temperamental. He took a bat to the umpire cameras when he was pitching. He showed up Rodriguez in an All Star game (which I personally enjoyed). You do stuff like this and I believe old time writers downgrade you.

        • HaakAway

          But again that has nothing to do with if you deserve to be in the HOF. I get it that it is reality and self-inflicted but somehow being “blind” beyond the stats should be all that matters. Listing stats without a name makes you be more objective and it is a shame it is not possible.

          • Noce

            I agree that stats should be the major component of the analysis. There has to be some consideration for the stats as compared to others of the same era. How good was the team, the stadium, were they suspected of PEDs ect. I do agree with you off field activities should not be part of the analysis.

    • crawnik

      Schilling thinks he’s bigger than the game itself.

      • crawnik

        Maybe saying that Schill thinks he is bigger than the game itself was probably the wrong thing to say. Just my opinion. Haak is probably right when he said that his opinions outside of baseball are affecting his HOF chances.

    • Efrain

      Schilling may be a polarizing personality and while his record may not be a slam dunk he has post season success in many of his stops, which tells you a great deal about his ability to rise in the big stage.

      I think it’s sad that many writers and voters had predisposed feeling of guys like him and Bonds, maybe not the nicest guys but I feel the writers also baited guys like that to act out. The growth of media and internet age only exacerbated the situation.

      Imagine if media and social media had been around guys like Ted Williams and Ty Cobb, they would have been skewered in the press just as much if not more.

      I feel no all players need to be choir boys, as most people don’t need to. A player shouldn’t have to kiss babies to present himself to the press as more affable. Take Bonds – he just wanted to play the game. they should have left him alone and just sat back and enjoyed the ride.

      • Noce

        It’s too early for rum spiked eggnog so it must be the season. But I am actually agreeing with Efrain.

        • Efrain

          lol forget the Egg nog I go straight for the Bourbon or dark rum, something lovely from the islands like a Rhum Clement

          • DrLefty

            I wish I liked bourbon, but I am reprising my bourbon-glazed carrots from Thanksgiving for Christmas dinner. I thought they were a home run (because this is a baseball blog, see?). Rum in eggnog is very tasty.

            I just saw a recipe for eggnog cookies with M & Ms, and I may give that a whirl tomorrow.

          • channelclemente
          • DrLefty

            That looks good!

            BTW, I’m trying my first meal delivery kit tonight, from an outfit called Chef’d. Jumbo scallops with wild mushroom risotto. Will let you know how it turns out!

          • Efrain

            Dr. would you care to share the Bourbon glazed carrot recipe?

            Don’t like Bourbon??!! It is an acquired taste for some, as am I 😉

          • DrLefty

            Here you go! http://allrecipes.com/recipe/232363/chef-johns-bourbon-glazed-carrots/

            Yeah, just don’t care for bourbon. I’m a lightweight when it comes to spirits. Tequila (in margaritas, not shots), and vodka-based drinks, that’s about it.

          • Efrain

            Appreciate it and will give these a try!!! Thank you

      • Matthew

        You nailed it.

      • 2holehitting

        Did writers bait Barry into spousal abuse? Lefty certainly has things about guys who beat up their wives. I wonder how shee feels regarding Bonds.

        • DrLefty

          I think the Hall of Fame is a museum that represents the history of baseball, not a church. I don’t see how you can represent the history of baseball without Barry Bonds or Roger Clemens. I just don’t. My husband and I were talking about this last night. We think the HOF should have an exhibit about the PEDs era, specifically how it juxtaposed with “resurrecting” baseball after the very damaging strike of 1994-95. So you have an exhibit that acknowledges the era (like the “Dead Ball” era) and then you move on from it–and yes, Bonds and Clemens need to get their plaques. I mean, if Bud Selig and Tony LaRussa are there–whose achievements that got them into the Hall are built upon PEDs cheaters–well, the best players of that era need to be there, too.

          There are drunks, cheaters, racists, adulterers, and wife-beaters already enshrined. I wouldn’t want to invite any of them for dinner or have them date my daughters, but as to their historical achievements, they belong in the museum devoted to baseball.

        • The Oracle

          Allegations made in a hotly contested divorce, especially when she never called the police, should be viewed with a degree of cynicism.

          • DrLefty

            Even if it’s true (and I take your point that it might not be), see my comment just below.

          • The Oracle

            I agree that it should have nothing to do with the HOF.

          • channelclemente

            The irony is that this kerfuffle seems over being entitled to apply for membership in sports writers publicity scheme. It’s a beauty contest.

          • The Oracle

            Actually, the Hall of Fame process has done a good job of allowing in only those who are deserving of the honor. The problem has been the exclusion of others who are also deserving. I disagree with your premise.

          • channelclemente

            It’s a beauty contest, an intertribal beauty contest. Most fans, people who go to and watch ballgames, could care less. Lately it’s turned into a way for Giants fans to rehabilitate the image of Barry Bonds. I suppose the merit of that goal is open to interpretation at the very least.

          • 2holehitting

            According to court records she accused Barry of abuse for years. According to the SFGate article fact there was atleast 1 call to the Atherton PD.

            Having been in an abusive marriage with a wildy mean drunk of a wife, I can atest that I did not call the police when I was stabbed in the arm with a fork or was threatened at screwdriver point or wailed on in her FITs of anger and rage when she was Blind drunk and did not recognize family or friends. My response was generally break the phone so she could not call at 2 or 3AM drunk out of her mind and harass others and I many times disabled the car so she could not drive drunk. I stopped being social and going out as I did not want to be in public when she turned from nice to mean.

            I was handcuffed by the police for trying to leave with her from my best friends wedding that I was at as she went bezerk once she realized I was trying to get her home. I was trying to get her to go home before she snapped as she was getting that “look” from the booze. I was too late. She got out of the car and Puked on the Policemans shoes and legs. He realized the situation and uncuffed me to let me get her home.

            I tolerated the abuse for 9 years before walking out the door a month after Christmas she blew a fuse and raised a fist at me started screaming and yelling all becauseI asked if there was a way she liked to box up the Christmas ornaments as i was starting to take down the tree.

            Walking out was the best thing I ever did for myself.

            So please do not lecture me on there were never calls and it was only brought out in hotly contested divorce. It may have been but then again she may have been like millions others that were not as there is atleast 1 report to the police.

            http://www.sfgate.com/news/article/Sun-Bonds-Tells-Court-Barry-Beat-Her-Often-3018220.php

          • The Oracle

            I’m not saying that it definitely didn’t happen, only that allegations made in a contested and big money divorce dispute don’t prove that it happened.

      • DrLefty

        If Schilling gets in or not, it should be solely upon his baseball achievements (or lack thereof). Period. End of story. I think I’d vote for him even though I despise him as a person–not just his politics but all the people whose lives he ruined with his failed businesses. His postseason heroics alone should get him there.

        • paul in p.v.

          20 seasons, 216-146, 3.46 – nah.

  • Efrain
    • Scout Finch Baseball

      Órale !

      Too bad the African American representation has gone down so low…

      • Efrain

        Yes I’ve posted numerous times about this. Sad.

        From the last numbers I’ve seen, something like 5-6 of all Div 1 baseball players are African American. With teams like the Giants looking at college players more than high school, well it puts African American kids at a disadvantage.

        I’m sure there are some kids out there who would like to play college abll, but Div 1 baseball is not a big money driver like football and basketball with

        less scholarships available. Add to that Title IX hurting many Div one male teams and Softball is bigger in many schools (take Cal for instance who almost lost their Mens baseball team a few years ago).

  • cynic

    The 49ers really avoided a huge mistake not hiring that Adam Gase guy and going with in house dream candidate Jim Tomsula.

    • They kept Gase there for 5-15 hours. Most would have bailed after 4 hours. He also did not want Vic Fangio as his DC not did Vic wish to be his.

      • cynic

        My understanding was he wanted Fangio as DC but Baalke wanted him to have Tomsula as DC. The package of Gase and Fangio was on the table and Baalke screwed it up.

        • I cannot disagree with you ever about Baalke. In the last few days they lose Marcus Rush off their practice squad. Rush deserved a call up by Chip but since Rush is not one of Baalke’s draft choices he gagged and the Jags have him now. DC O’Neil all but outed Baalke when he said the decision was “above our pay grade”.

  • As Lefty mentioned yesterday, Amy G is not going anywhere and apparently fired off a Petaluma Tweet telling the sources where to penetrate the false tweet. :-/

    http://richliebermanreport.blogspot.com/2016/12/i-made-mistake.html

  • Even back in JUNE – Conor was doing his thing http://tinyurl.com/hq2jpqk

    • Sgbssfg

      Good memories, when the unlikely team pieced together with duct tape and kite string was headed to the best record in baseball.

  • Sara Smith Hirsch

    Thewife
    Dr Lefty has been keeping me feeling the love all week long. A tough go this past year but approaching the 20th, the anniversary of his death I did the only thing that made sense to honor him. Renewed our Giants 2017 season tix and went on the Annual Audubon Christmas Bird Count. I was with a couple of the folks that had just met Allen that day and were with him when he died so unexpectedly. Being with them, talking a bit about how grateful I was that they were there with him at a sacred moment was what I was striving for all year. That and the first time I looked through his binoculars at the California Thrush and the Rock Wren that he was so excited to see for the first time and now I am hooked.
    Although, Allen attended the games in the past several years mainly by himself or with our boys and friends my loyalty to the Giants has never wavered and we met and dated at Giants games in the early 80’s. My image of him is one of complete submersion in the game with headphones on listening on the radio. His scholarly approach to saber metrics and to anything he grew a passion for was admirable. I felt the same way about snacks and the scene at PacBell, it will always be PacBell. We bought a brick that can be found that reads, “Giants Fans Forever Sam & Pete Hirsch Pacbell Park is a field of dreams Allen & Sara Hirsch, April 2000

    • Matthew

      I know you know this, but Allen was a very special man. We miss him every day, and we send him messages every day on here.

      Please know his Giants family thinks of you often….

      • Sara Smith Hirsch

        Thank you, your thoughts help me immensely. Kinda like a really satisfying crack of the bat. I don’t feel quite as alone as I think of good friends of Allen, like you. You were his peeps.

    • My name is Mike and Allen and I would converse via email. This is way way late but just wanted to say thank you for sharing. I spoke to those in his “Society” and felt even more blessed to know him. I am in a hospital 3/4 of the day in Ottawa Canada – three hours ahead and when I sign off I say Goodnight Allen. I hope you do not mind. 🙂

      • Sara Smith Hirsch

        Mike, I say goodnight to him every night and good morning each day. He continues to be the quiet, strong guy in my life. My faith is that he hears us both. Thanks for reaching out this way.

        • I remember one time he either sent me this or I saw it on line. He really loved the saber side of things and I of course was/is the opposite

          Need Owner!!! Excellent SF Bay Area NL League
          Posted by TJ on February 06, 19102 at 01:24:09:

          PRESTIGIOUS NL LEAGUE SEEKS PRESTIGIOUS NL OWNER

          Type: National League ONLY, Keeper league (3-year contracts)
          Locale: San Francisco Bay Area
          Draft: Auction-style, $260 salary cap
          Categories: 8 (HR, RBI, SB, AVG, W, S, ERA, WHIP)
          Teams: 9-10
          Draft Day: Saturday, April 6, SF Bay Area

          The Irrational League, founded as a motley crew of baseball fanatic’s waaaaaay back in 1984, seeks a grizzled veteran owner to guide an absolutely loaded team into our 19th season of fantasy league fun. Competitive camaraderie is the name of the game in the Irrational League, so a sense of humor and some familiarity and experience with traditional 8-category Rotisserie-style baseball is required.

          The Irrational League, headquartered in the San Francisco Bay Area, will have 9-10 teams in 2002, composed of 23 players each exclusively from the National League. You could be the owner of a pre-existing team already armed to the teeth with studs like Vladimir Guerrero, Ken Griffey, Todd Helton, Andruw Jones, Lance Berkman and Billy Wagner, to name just a few. Unless you completely blow it on Draft Day, you should have no problem contending with the big dawgs for the Irrational League championship.

          If you are interested in joining a fun-loving group of fantasy-league addicts in an established league with a storied history, e-mail “edensca@aol.com” or ”allenvwh@msn.com” ASAP.

          Please include your contact information as well as relevant roto-baseball experience and a short bio on yourself that explains why you think you’re Irrational enough to join us. If it seems like you might be a good fit, we’ll send you our web site information so you can check out the rules and other pertinent info. We plan to fill this ownership slot no later than March 1 and preferably sooner. Draft Day is scheduled for Saturday, April 6 in the San Francisco Bay Area. If you want to be an Irrational League owner, your attendance at Draft Day is mandatory (we don’t do phone or online drafts).

          • Sara Smith Hirsch

            Mike,
            This is the most enthusiastic letter or advert he ever wrote! What a treat for me to see this today. I will pass it along to my boys who would help out on draft day. I remember being miffed as draft day fell on my birthday often and Allen hosted the draft in our large living room, often running well into the evening. Did you join and come for the draft? The boys loved being a part of posting the bids and keeping track of the draft. Sam has the impressive trophy that Allen had from the Irrational League! We look forward to another season with the Giants.

          • Hi Sara – No I never made it to the draft. I did not join the group. 🙂

          • I only own a desk top computer but I use to tease Allen because every once in awhile his avatar would be a picture of former Giant Randy Winn and then it would switch back to the wise old Owl. He told me why but it was still something I looked forward to. And Allen convinced me it was random 🙂