This Week in Giants Baseball History

How long until pitchers & catchers report? Still too long!

January 16
Herbel Medicine: Former San Francisco Giants pitcher Ron Herbel was born on this date back in 1938, in Denver CO. Herbel spent the first seven years of a 9-year career in San Francisco, winning a career-high 12 games as a swingman in 1965.

January 17
He Was a Bit More Than That: On this date in 1970, the Sporting News looked back on the previous decade and named Giants Hall of Famer Willie Mays the Player of the Decade for the 1960s. An MVP award, nine Gold Gloves, and three home run titles during the decade were pretty solid credentials.

January 18
53 Innings as a Giant: Dick Estelle was born on this date in 1942, in Lakewood NJ. Estelle lasted two seasons in the Majors, all with the Giants. His light workload and abrupt cessation of his career at the age of 23 in 1965 suggests that Estelle’s career was one that was prematurely ended.

January 19
Not Quite a Gale-Force Wind: Briefly a Giant, Rich Gale was born on this date in 1954, in Littleton NH. This force of nature spent the fifth of eight Major League seasons as a Giant in 1982, and compiled a less than stellar 7-14 record. Gale would be traded to the Cincinnati Reds before the following season.

January 20
He Was a Long-Term Investment!: On this date in 1916, the New York Giants purchased a young Edd Roush for $7500, then dealt him away 39 games into the season after he batted .188 in 69 at-bats. Trouble is, Roush would spend the next ten years in Cincinnati putting up Hall of Fame numbers (for the dead-ball era). The Giants re-signed him at age 34 for three years in 1927, but Roush would go into the Hall as a Red.

January 21
Grab Some Birthday Candles, Meat: [note: normally this columnist doesn’t like using the same story twice, but this is one welcome exception] Duane Kuiper’s booth mate was born on this date back in 1952, in Long Beach, CA. Sure, Mike Krukow is known these days for his entertaining and insightful Giants broadcasting, but he was a hell of a pitcher in a 14-year career before getting behind the mike. Happy 54rd, Kruk!

January 22
Kind of Like Letting the In-Laws Stay for Too Long: On this date in 1913, the New York Giants gave permission to the New York Yankees to share the Polo Grounds for the upcoming season. Trouble is, the Yankees didn’t leave until 1923!

Don Shin eats, breathes, thinks, and bleeds in Orange and Black. Pac Bell Park officially opened on his 25th birthday (the one year he decided to move out of the Bay Area!!!). For the 2000 playoff drive, he dyed his hair orange while studying in Korea. He watched Game 6 of the '02 World Series at a restaurant in LA, and couldn't finish his meal afterwards. Feel free to write him at to commiserate, cheer, and complain.

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