Monday, October 29, 2012

You've Gotta Have Heart...Damn, Giants!

San Francisco's Coit Tower bathed in Giants orange on Sunday night  (photo by Luanne Dietz, SF Chronicle)

One of the best-known tunes from Damn Yankees (the 1955 Broadway hit and 1958 movie) is the catchy number "Heart," and it goes like this:

You've gotta have heart
All you really need is heart
When the odds are sayin' you'll never win
That's when the grin should start...

These lyrics aptly describe the situation the now World Champion San Francisco Giants found themselves in. Until they won the third game (in a row) of the World Series on Saturday night, the odds had been against them going into games one, two and three (not to mention the playoffs).

Unlike the hapless Washington Senators with not much more than heart in Damn Yankees, the San Francisco Giants team does have great sluggers, pitchers and is a great ball club. With this second World Series win in three years, no one can attribute the Giants' tremendous success to "luck" or a series of "flukes," it's a combination of talent and skill plus that key ingredient, heart.

Having descended from Dodgers fans (the Brooklyn Dodgers) and been raised in Southern California, I grew up a devoted fan of the LA Dodgers. Once I moved to the Bay Area, cheering for the Giants didn't come easily or quickly - the rivalry between SF and LA is serious and sometimes ugly. However, by the time the 1989 "Battle of the Bay" Series (the Giants vs. the Oakland A's) came along, I'd become a Giants fan. I'll never forget Game 2 of that series in Oakland; I was sitting high in the Oakland Coliseum and remarked to the group I was with, "I'd hate to be up here in an earthquake." Of course, Game 3 in San Francisco was disrupted by the monster Loma Prieta quake (which disabled the Bay Bridge, took down a few freeways as well as homes in San Francisco's Marina District). The A's swept that series once it resumed 10 days later. But that's all ancient history, along with the rest of the San Francisco Bay Area, I'm basking in another Giants victory - in a four game sweep, at that. 

Last time the Giants brought the trophy home, in 2010, the welcome-home/victory parade through downtown San Francisco turned out to be the biggest event in San Francisco history (attracting an estimated crowd of one million+). This year the parade is set for October 31. Perfect. Giants black-and-orange on Halloween. It's going to be wild and woolly in downtown San Francisco this Wednesday.

Bravo, San Francisco Giants!

Buster Posey's home run

Closer Sergio Romo after the final pitch

The Giants win the 108th World Series in Detroit

And now, with Reel Life's classic movie theme as well as baseball in mind, a legendary Abbott and Costello routine - from The Naughty Nineties (1945):


(photos via SFGate)


  1. What a fun post! we NY Yankee fans are still licking our wounds, but we are oh so happy for those Giants (after all, it must be the NY pedigree!).

  2. A Giants Yankees face-off would've been fun - but with Hurricane Sandy on the way, who knows what might've happened. By the way, had it been any team but the Giants, I would've been rooting for the Tigers, love that Motor City team.

  3. When the Cincy Reds went up 2 games on the Giants everybody here was making plans for the next series. Obviously they were bitterly disappointed. I'm a Yankees fan, so it didn't make much difference to me. Still, I'm glad they can take solace in knowing they lost to the eventual champs.

  4. Maybe the Giants and the Yankees will face each other again one day. When both teams were in NYC and made it into the World Series, they were called "Subway Series" - you can imagine what that rivalry was like.

  5. Congrats to the Giants. I was really surprised that they took Detroit in four games, but then I was surprised when Detroit swept the Yankees to win the pennant. I really don't follow any sports, so I guess it will be movies until spring training begins.

  6. Kevin, This year, unlike 2010, the Giants' ticker-tape parade took place on a gray, cloudy and sometimes wet (Halloween) day. But the crowd was as big (around a million) as it was in 2010. Willie Mays was there, Tony Bennett sang "I Left My Heart..." - a big day in San Francisco. Now its back to movies for me, too...