As I peck away, my hometown team, the A’s, are playing an exhibition game [spare me the politically correct “pre-season” bullshit] with the Giants of San Francisco. Their fine announcers, Greg Papa and Mike Krukow, reminded me that this is the 50th year the former New Yawkas will be playing in SF.
I was eleven when they left. The New York Giants had been my grandfather’s team. We’d sit, he and I, in the right field grandstand, replete with a Rose Niss sandwich on pumpernickel. “Filling if not tasty,” would chuckle Phil about every meal she prepared. He’d tell me stories about McGraw, Ott and Frankie Frisch, the “Fordham Flash.” We shared the thrill that was Willie. I learned about the “Negro Leagues.” I was taught that Satchel Paige, Cool Papa Bell, and Josh Gibson did quite well, thank you, against the barnstorming Ruth, Gehrig, Feller, and Dimag.
Years later we stood and cheered for Mays and found it hard to back the Mets when the “carpetbagging bastards” came back to play in the Polo Grounds. Hard, but not impossible.