Silver and gold were added to the traditional orange and black team colors of the San Francisco Giants today as the players, coaches and staff received their 2012 World Series championship rings at an elegant pre-game ceremony at AT&T Park Sunday.
With the infield transformed into a stage, complete with orange carpet leading from the Giants’ dugout to the home plate area, and following the baselines, the setting was complete with dual podiums set behind the 2012 World Series trophy, which was prominently on display in front.
Giants public address announcer Renel Brooks-Moon kicked things off by inviting fans to turn their attention the big scoreboard video screen, which showed footage of the doors of the Tiffany and Co.-the company that made both the trophy and rings-building in Union Square opening, and the rings being loaded onto a motorized cable car that made it’s way through the city to the ballpark.
The left field gates were then opened up, and two police motorcycles escorted the car, lights and sirens blaring for effect.
The boxes bearing the rings were carried in by a group of cable car operators to the tune of “San Francisco (Open Your Golden Gate)” being played live by the Dick Bright Orchestra, and placed on tables next to several oversized light blue boxes designed to look like Tiffany’s signature packaging.
After a video showing highlights of the 2012 World Series win, Giants announcers Mike Krukow and Duane Kuiper-wearing black suits with orange vests and ties-were introduced and acted as masters of ceremonies for the proceedings.
“This represents what we all went through together-there’s no more diverse a city on this planet than our city, and it takes a lot to unite this city, and this team did it. We will never forget that, and that’s what this ring represents,” said Krukow.
Once Giants President and CEO Larry Baer and General Manager Brian Sabean-who Krukow called “the architect of the team”-were introduced, manager Bruce Bochy was called out.
“Receiving a ring that really represents what they accomplished, there’s nothing like it. Trust me, when you go out there, it’s emotional; some guys had tears in their eyes,” said Bochy after the game.
Donning special gold-lettered uniforms and hats, players and coaches were introduced one by one, each trotting out and receiving their ring, all to thunderous applause coming from the fans.
Several former Giants players and members of the Baseball Hall of Fame were given honorary rings; Jim Davenport, Orlando Cepeda, Juan Marichal, Willie McCovey and Willie Mays.
The rings, made of white gold, feature the iconic interlocking “SF” logo made of 52 round diamonds, while seven more diamonds, on both sides, pay tribute to the number of Giants world series championships.
They also feature the player’s name and number, along with a cable car and the team’s final victorious standings in the post-season run that culminated in the winning sweep of the Detroit Tigers.
As the festivities were coming to an end, and it was time to get ready to play the game, the Giants did something unusual-for the ceremonial first pitch each player was given a ball to throw into the stands for people to catch and keep, further signifying the connection between the team and fans.
“It’s something you’re going to cherish for a long time down the road, thinking about the guys that you played with, you’ll remember everybody that was in that clubhouse when everything went down,” said pitcher Matt Cain.
“We had so much fun together, it was a fun post-season, it was exciting, with a lot of roller coaster emotions, up and down.”
Relief pitcher Sergio Romo, who struck out Miguel Cabrera to secure the Giants victory over the Detroit Tigers in Game 4 of the World Series, said, “It’s an amazing feeling to be part of one-let alone two-it means a lot just to be a part of something special like that, to know that you were able to contribute to something as unique and cool as it is to win a world championship.”
Sean McCourt, Bay City News