This Week in Giants Baseball History.

Winter in baseball is usually time for change, and the following transactions include some moves that worked, and some moves that… well, didn't quite work out. Hindsight is, of course, 20-20, but AT LEAST WE HAD SOMETHING TO TALK ABOUT IN THOSE OFFSEASONS!!!

November 27
And to Think We Almost Had His Son for $10 Million a Year: Way, way before salaries got horribly out of control, young San Francisco Giants outfielder Gary Matthews won the NL Rookie of the Year award on this date in 1973.  The father of future millionaire Gary Matthews Jr., the Sarge batted .300 with 12 home runs and 17 stolen bases in 148 games.

November 28
Full Monte Out: Monte Irvin's short but successful Hall of Fame career with the New York Giants ended on this date in 1955, as he was claimed by the Chicago Cubs in the Rule V draft.  The former Negro League star and WWII veteran only played one season with the Cubs, retiring after the 1956 season.

November 29
The Beginning of a Gay(lord) Journey: After ten mostly successful seasons with his initial team, Hall of Famer Gaylord Perry was traded by the Giants along with Frank Duffy to the Cleveland Indians in exchange for All-Star pitcher "Sudden" Sam McDowell.  Largely due to alcoholism, McDowell's career quickly plummeted thereafter.  Perry, however, would go on to play 11 more seasons with six other teams before retiring with 314 victories in 1983.

November 30
This Wouldn't Be the Last Time the Giants Swindle the White Sox: In a blockbuster deal on this date in 1961, the Giants acquired pitchers Don Larsen (yes, the perfect game Don Larsen) and Billy Pierce in exchange for four players.  Both pitchers would contribute greatly to the NL pennant-winning Giants the following season, with Pierce winning 16 games.

December 1
And He Became OurMando: After a spectacular season in which he went 2-2 with a microscopic 1.29 ERA and a career-high 47 saves with the Florida Marlins, Armando Benitez was signed as a free agent by the Giants on this date in 2004.  Those numbers must seem like a long time ago to everyone, but guess what – it's another contract year for Mando!

December 2
Maybe They Could Have Tried This with Bonds… Kidding!: In a bout of musical chairs on this date in 1941, New York Giants manager Bill Terry took over duties as GM, and Hall of Famer Mel Ott took Terry's role as manager in addition to continuing his stellar play on the field.  Ott had another banner year the following season; however, in his seven seasons as player/manager, the Giants never finished higher than third.

December 3
Felipe's First Departure from the Giants: On this date in 1963, now-former manager Felipe Alou was traded along with three other players to the Milwaukee Braves in exchange for catcher Del Crandell, and two pitching Bobs – Shaw and Hendley.  It would take another 40 years before Alou would wear orange and black again.

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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