Good morning, McCoven!
I’ve been on the IL with the stomach flu for the last few days, so I haven’t really had a chance to process the news about Joe Panik.
There was a time, shortly after Tim Lincecum had his hip surgery in 2015 when it became clear that he wouldn’t be coming back. During that time, I realized I needed to decide who my favorite player would be once Lincecum left. For a brief time, that player was Joe Panik. Because I remember watching him closely and thinking he did literally everything very well. Unfortunately, after his injury, he never quite came back at the same level (and obviously Brandon Belt ended up getting that “honor” for me).
But that doesn’t change the fact that Joe Panik was an incredibly valuable member of this time for several years. And it may be his biggest cliche moment, but his double play in the 2014 World Series will be how I remember him forever. It’s the first thing my brain thinks of when I think of him. Also, the post-game headline, “Panik! At the Frisco” which still makes me irrationally angry, as a fan of the band and native of the Bay Area. But that’s beside the point.
Thanks for the memories, Joe. And best wishes on making it work with your next team. If anyone deserves the “Forever Giant” title, it is you.