The roller coaster that was the San Francisco Giants 2020 season is officially over.
Among the many swoops and turns along the way were: a normal Spring Training interrupted by the coronavirus; a many months long delay in the season; a five-round draft; a second Spring Training in the summer; the loss of Buster Posey due to the adoption of twins who were born prematurely; the start of a four-months late season; the unthinkable blowing of a few games in a row to seemingly sink the season; the almost as unthinkable run to get them right back into it; the postponement of games as a protest against police brutality and system oppression; the postponement of games due to air quality; three road games at home; the season coming down to the final inning; and having the season end on the millionth bad strike call of the day.
Did I miss anything? Quite a bit, I’m sure.
Anyway, with all of that over, the Giants released a statement to their fans through the social media platforms, signed by president and CEO Larry Baer, president of baseball operations Farhan Zaidi, and manager Gabe Kapler. Before you go to the trouble of trying to read that tiny font, I’ve written out the statement below the tweet.
Here’s the full statement:
A MESSAGE FROM THE SAN FRANCISCO GIANTS
A year ago, we could not have imagined the unprecedented challenges we would face in 2020 -- in our own lives, in society and, of course, in baseball. None of us knew if there would be a season, given the known and unknown complexities of the coronavirus.
Now, as we’ve had a few days to reflect on the successful completion of our 60-game season, all of us at the San Francisco Giants are even more appreciative of the grit and commitment our players, coaches and staff showed in every one of those 60 games. We began as clear underdogs and competed for a playoff spot right to the final out of the final game.
This is a team that never gave up, rallying time and again when they fell behind. Fourteen of our 29 wins were come-from-behind victories. We improved as the season went on, going 21-15 over our last 36 games and reclaiming our home field advantage, winning 19 of 33 games at Oracle Park.
We’re proud of everything our players accomplished this year. This includes the empathy, courage and commitment they showed in speaking out about racism, equality and social justice in our society.
If one word can describe the 2020 team it is this: Resilience.
Consider what this season threw at them. A sudden shutdown of spring training. A brief summer camp. Separation from families. Social distancing from one another. An influx of new coaches and young players with limited opportunities to bond as a team. Regular coronavirus tests. Strict health protocols. Postponed games. Multiple double-headers. Record temperatures. Smoky skies.
And no fans. This exacted a special kind of toll.
“I think a lot of guys battled through not having fans on a daily basis,” Evan Longoria said. “I think we take for granted at times how valuable the fans are, how beneficial it is to have a cheering crowd at home in that environment, one that you feel like you can thrive off that energy.”
But you made sure to let us know you were still there with us. Resilience seems to run in the Giants family. We saw you pour into McCovey Cove in your kayaks and boats, and heard your chants of “Let’s go Giants!” through the port walk fence. We read your encouraging comments on Twitter, enjoyed your Orange Friday snapshots on Instagram, and opened every letter you mailed to the clubhouse and front office. And your cut-outs were awesome! The rows and rows of familiar faces made the empty park feel more like home.
It was heartbreaking to fall one win short of reaching the playoffs. But in the week since that season-ending loss, we began to see the pain and disappointment as a sign of progress: We experience heartbreak only when we have high expectations. Those expectations took shape with every win and late-inning rally, every extra-base hit and spectacular catch. On that last day, we had every reason to expect great things. We have every reason to expect them now and next season and the season after that, and we know you do, too.
We are already deep into plans for next year, including developing health and safety protocols to create the safest possible environment for your return to Oracle Park. We will continue to keep you posted on those efforts throughout the off season.
Perhaps it’s just because I can still taste the exciting 2020 season on my tongue, but I’m already looking forward to 2021 more than I thought I would be.
Only 178 days until Opening Day.