Giants

Bryce Harper reveals he was choosing between Giants and Phillies

Bryce Harper reveals he was choosing between Giants and Phillies

I was the ring leader of the "Bring Bryce Harper to the Giants" circus during the offseason. I even wrote an embarrassing letter to try and convince him to wear Orange and Black.

I should have had it notarized.

Anyways, we've moved on -- I'm still working through some feelings, but he is now a member of the Philadelphia Phillies. But Harper recently opened up about the final days before he made his decision. And it turns out, the Giants were on his mind more than we realized. 

“I had just met with Larry and Farhan about two days before,” Harper told The Athletic's Ken Rosenthal in an interview with FS1. “The Dodgers came in right after them. They were saying, ‘We can go four years,’ that kind of thing. I was like, ‘That’s probably not going to work for me. I want long-term.’ I was very appreciative of the money, but I wanted long-term.

“The next day was Thursday. Scott (Boras) called me at like 9 a.m. I was still sleeping, still laying in bed. He says, ‘Hey, we have an offer from the Phillies. Here’s what they’re willing to do.’ I said, ‘Hey, have you heard back from San Fran?’ He said he hadn’t heard back from them yet. I said, ‘OK, once you hear back from San Fran, let me know.’"

That's when Harper and his wife, Kayla, talked it out a bit. For them, it was about finding a place that was best for their family and where they would be "cared about as individuals and not just Bryce the baseball player."

Understandable. 

“We sat there and talked for a little bit. And I remember standing there, me hugging her and saying, ‘Hey, we’re going to Philly.’ That was before we even heard from San Fran," Harper said. "San Fran called back, offered whatever it was. By that point, it was kind of like, ‘I’m already a Philadelphia Phillie.’ In my heart, I was already a Philadelphia Phillie. It was nothing against San Francisco. They’re a great organization. It’s a great city. It just came down to what I felt. And by that point, it was Philly.”

[RELATED: Bruce Bochy comments on pursuit of Harper]

The Giants offered Harper a 12-year, $310 million contract, but it turns out he had made up his mind by then.

What could have been.

Giants misplay grounder in shift, can't recover against Braves

Giants misplay grounder in shift, can't recover against Braves

SAN FRANCISCO -- The Giants did not take batting practice on Wednesday or run through any pregame drills on the field, but even with a six-hour workout they probably would not have practiced the play that helped put them in a deep hole. 

Jeff Samardzija should have been out of the second with the game still scoreless, but the Giants botched what looked to be an inning-ending double play. Ozzie Albies hit a one-hopper back to the mound and Samardzija spun to throw, but there was a shift on, and third baseman Evan Longoria, playing short, did not cover the bag. Shortstop Brandon Crawford, playing where a second baseman usually would, also did not cover. 

After a 9-2 loss, Samardzija called it a "freak thing," "unfortunate" and something the Giants hadn't really worked on. 

"I turned around and really just saw center field," Samardzija said. "I tried to lead one of them to the bag and obviously at that point it was too late. There are a lot of great things about the shift, but sometimes it does get guys out of position."

The Braves ended up with two on and one out, and Dansby Swanson blasted a flat cutter into the left-field seats for a three-run homer a few batters later. Freddie Freeman made it 6-0 two pitches after that with a solo shot to right-center. Samardzija mixed a costly wild pitch into the rally, too. 

Manager Bruce Bochy said the miscommunication in the shift was something the staff and players would discuss. 

"They're not set up like that very often, but it's all about communication and knowing who has got it," Bochy said. 

[RELATED: Bochy mixes up pregame routine looking for better starts]

In Cincinnati or Denver, perhaps the Giants would have rallied. But this being Oracle Park, the rest of the night was a slow crawl to loss No. 27.

All six runs on Samardzija's line went down as unearned. He said he was happy with the way he battled after the early mistakes. But that second inning was all it took. 

"You've got to be on your game the whole time and can't give them extra chances, and if you do, you've got to shut the door," Samardzija said. 

Watch Giants playoff hero Cody Ross sink hole-in-one at Pebble Beach

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USATSI

Watch Giants playoff hero Cody Ross sink hole-in-one at Pebble Beach

Cody Ross is famous for a few particular swings during his tenure with the Giants.

He has since retired, but apparently still has a knack for the memorable moment.

On Wednesday, the former playoff hero was jumping for joy again, but this time, it was due to a different sort of athletic achievement.

Ross, of course, was named the 2010 NLCS MVP and hit five home runs in the 2010 postseason on the way to the first of three Giants' World Series titles in a span of five years.

[RELATED: New rules would have prevented Giants from adding Cody Ross in 2010]

Clearly, he can still put a good swing on a ball.