Giants

Brandon Belt reveals how he accidentally cut off half of his eyebrow

Brandon Belt reveals how he accidentally cut off half of his eyebrow

Whether it's a haircut or a new wardrobe, looking good for picture day was always a must when growing up. For Brandon Belt, a new look was a bit of an accident this year. 

The Giants first baseman arrived for photos in Scottsdale, Ariz. with something missing. Or a bit of something. Not his beard, not a haircut, but a piece of his right eyebrow. 

"Fortunately, it was right before photo day, so I'm sure it's in every single one of them," Belt said sarcastically Wednesday night to Amy G during the Giants' spring training game against the Indians. "But, it's comin' back." 

Yes, this wasn't on purpose. So how did this all happen?

Let's hear Belt's side of the story. 

"I was trimmin' my nose hairs and it had an eyebrow guard on it, so I thought I'd try it," Belt said. "You get those little stragglers every now and then. I did it on my left side. It looked a little thin so I had to even it out. Did it on my right side and chopped half my eyebrow off." 

[RELATED: Joey Bart joining Giants in 2019 halted by farm director Kyle Haines]

Mistakes happen, and memories are made. Maybe this is exactly what Belt needs to crack 20 home runs this season. 

How Hunter Pence returned home to Giants after one season with Rangers

How Hunter Pence returned home to Giants after one season with Rangers

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- With the full squad finally in place and the construction around the ballpark nearing its conclusion, the Giants finally opened the gates of Scottsdale Stadium to fans on Monday. There was a long line out front at 10 a.m., but with the exception of a playlist heavy on 90s rap, it was pretty quiet on the main field for most of the morning. 

But then Hunter Pence emerged from the cage beyond the right field wall, and fans down the line started to rise and welcome him back to the organization. The applause continued all the way to the plate, and Pence delighted the fans by hitting a high homer to left to kick off his first round of batting practice. 

It's 2020, and for all the change around the organization, there's still one thing the Giants can count on. Hunter Pence, now 36, remains wildly popular. 

"It's great to be back, that's for sure," Pence said upon checking into camp Sunday. "It was a quick process, it popped up late. Everything worked together, and I had some good conversations with Farhan and with Kapler. It was really exciting. 

"Obviously this is a home. I have a lot of history, a lot of friends, a lot of family here. The city feels like we have a great relationship -- I love it so much and I love the fan base."

Pence said the wooing process only started about three weeks before the Giants announced a one-year agreement in the hours before FanFest. It seemed to come out of nowhere, but Pence never gave up on returning to San Francisco. It felt like the Giants were giving him a grand sendoff in 2017, when he rode a custom scooter around the park and gave an emotional speech, but Pence never viewed it that way.

He quietly informed the front office that he would be interested in a reunion after he made some offseason swing changes, but the Giants preferred a different direction. 

Pence went back to Texas, hit .297 with 18 homers for the Rangers, made the All-Star team, and somehow became exactly what his old team was looking for in the weeks before spring training. Farhan Zaidi, Scott Harris and Gabe Kapler knew they needed more help against left-handed pitching, and Pence thumped southpaws last year. 

"Hunter had tangible swing changes that led to an excellent year with the Rangers," Kapler said. "Against left-handed pitching, he was even better. We're going to need to find ways to keep Hunter fresh and healthy and productive, and one of those ways is going to be mixing and matching. Go get the best matchup, but also give Hunter as many opportunities against left-handed pitching as possible while giving him the opportunity to earn more."

Kapler declined to elaborate this early about just how much playing time Pence is expected to get, pointing out that the spring competition is just beginning. For his part, Pence seems willing to take on a new role. He once started 331 consecutive games for Bruce Bochy, a streak that was perhaps counterproductive at times, but the best the Giants may be able to do this year is put him in a left field platoon with Alex Dickerson. 

"I have to put on a new hat," Pence said. "As you grow older and shift into roles, I'm open to putting on whatever hat it takes to help us accomplish being the best team we can."

It's clear the Giants at least checked off enough playing time boxes for Pence that it wasn't a hard decision to return to an organization that's now rebuilding. The San Diego Padres came with late interest and Pence also had an opportunity to go to camp with the Houston Astros, who play in Pence's current hometown, a place where he has opened up a coffee-and-gaming shop that's his hangout spot much of the offseason.

[RELATED: Kapler shares short message to Giants' full spring squad]

But he chose to return to San Francisco, the city where he not only won two titles, but also met and married his wife, Alexis. 

"We definitely had other opportunities and (Houston is) a city that we do live in, but I've only played with one of the players over there," Pence said. "Things just lined up. It makes a lot of sense for me to be here, we're happy to be here. We're thankful for every opportunity that was out there, but we're really happy to be home."

Giants say they won't include Aubrey Huff in 2010 World Series reunion

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USATSI

Giants say they won't include Aubrey Huff in 2010 World Series reunion

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- The Giants do celebrations and nostalgia better than anyone, and quite a bit of time will be devoted this season to looking back at the 2010 team that finally brought a title to San Francisco. But a key member of that team will not be invited to Oracle Park because of tweets he sent this offseason. 

The Giants have told Aubrey Huff, the starting first baseman on that team, that he is not welcome at the ballpark when they celebrate the 2010 championship. 

"Earlier this month, we reached out to Aubrey Huff to let him know that he will not be included in the upcoming 2010 World Series Championship reunion," the organization said Monday in a statement. "Aubrey has made multiple comments on social media that are unacceptable and run counter to the values of our organization. While we appreciate the many contributions that Aubrey made to the 2010 championship season, we stand by our decision."

The Athletic first reported Monday that Huff would not be included, and the 43-year-old told the website that he was "shocked" and "disappointed" by the decision.

"If it wasn't for me, they wouldn't be having a reunion," Huff told The Athletic. "But if they want to stick with their politically correct, progressive b------t, that's fine."

Huff hit .290 with 26 homers for the 2010 Giants and then dropped off over the next two years. He resurfaced years later with a Twitter account that often goes for shock value but crossed the line two notable times in the offseason. Giants officials were particularly taken aback by two tweets. 

In November, Huff tweeted a photo from a gun range with the caption "Getting my boys trained up on how to use a gun in the unlikely event" that Bernie Sanders beats Donald Trump in the 2020 election. In January, he tweeted about taking a flight to Iran to "kidnap about 10" women, writing "bring them back here as they fan us and feed us grapes, amongst other things."

[RELATED: Kapler shares short message to Giants' full spring squad]

Huff has not been around the ballpark much since retiring, but he came back to San Francisco in September for Bruce Bochy's final game, receiving a mixed reaction from the crowd. 

The Giants plan to celebrate the 2010 team on Aug. 16 and give out replica rings to the fans in attendance.