Giants

Forbes lists Giants as worth $3.1B, fifth-most valuable MLB franchise

Forbes lists Giants as worth $3.1B, fifth-most valuable MLB franchise

The 2019 season was another down year on the field for the Giants, and they struggled to attract as many fans to the ballpark as in the past, but the franchise still increased in value, according to Forbes. 

The annual list of MLB team values was released Thursday and the Giants ranked fifth at $3.1 billion, a three percent increase from the year before. According to Forbes, the Giants rank behind only the New York Yankees ($5 billion), Los Angeles Dodgers ($3.4 billion), Boston Red Sox ($3.3 billion) and Chicago Cubs ($3.2 billion). The A's were 26th at $1.1 billion.

The Giants crossed the $1 billion mark in 2014 and have continued to rise since. While the sport will be taking a massive financial hit this season, the Giants should be on solid footing moving forward. Their ballpark is paid off and construction is underway on the Mission Rock development across McCovey Cove that will provide a new stream of income.

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The Giants took a hit at the gates last season, falling under three million in total attendance for just the third time since moving to their new ballpark 20 years ago. The 2,707,760 fans marked the fewest total in Oracle Park's history. 

[RELATED: Bochy reveals his favorite memory from managing MadBum]

The organization should be on the upswing, though. The farm system once again is rated in the top 10 and should provide the talent to get the organization back into contention. The Giants, after years of paying or flirting with the luxury tax, can also see the light at the end of the tunnel when it comes to the team's payroll. 

Getting the payroll under control has been a point of emphasis for Farhan Zaidi, who was able to trade Mark Melancon's contract in July. Jeff Samardzija's $90 million deal ends after this season regardless of how many games are played and big contracts for Buster Posey, Johnny Cueto, Brandon Belt and Brandon Crawford expire after the 2021 season. For 2022, a year in which the Giants hope to have a competitive young core, Evan Longoria is the only player with a guaranteed contract. 

Barry Bonds closer comparison to Michael Jordan than Madison Bumgarner

Barry Bonds closer comparison to Michael Jordan than Madison Bumgarner

Michael Jordan and his exploits have dominated the internet for months since ESPN’s “The Last Dance” premiered. Comparisons and retrospectives have become a constant across social media. 

In that spirit, Bleacher Report tried to analyze who most closely resembles MJ’s legacy in MLB and identified two former Giants who possess Jordan-esque qualities: Madison Bumgarner and Barry Bonds.

For MadBum, his postseason dominance draws the closest parallels to Jordan. In over 100 innings of playoff pitching, Bumgarner has just a 2.11 ERA. That includes a dominant World Series in 2014 where MadBum closed out Game 7 with five scoreless relief innings, earning World Series MVP in the process. Bumgarner was critical to each of the Giants' three World Series titles over the past decade.

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Bonds, on the other hand, simply struck fear into the hearts of opponents in a way few athletes ever have. Teams were willing to walk players in with the bases loaded just to avoid giving up a grand slam to Bonds. His eye-popping seven NL MVP awards surpass Jordan’s five NBA MVPs, and the slugger owns all sorts of other league records. Bonds’ lack of a World Series makes this a tough comparison, but baseball is a completely different sport, and one player absolutely isn’t enough to win a championship. Bonds hit four home runs in the one World Series he ever appeared in, but the Los Angeles Angels managed to overtake the Giants in seven games.

[RELATED: Giants' Larry Baer believes 2020 MLB Draft requires 'better scouting']

While neither player is a perfect correlation to Jordan, Bonds clearly is the closer comparison here. MadBum is phenomenal, but he’s never been considered the greatest player or even the greatest pitcher in MLB. Bonds was at the top of the sport for several years and is the greatest slugger the league ever has seen. 

As B/R's Jacob Schafer closes his article with, baseball doesn't have a person who perfectly matches up with Jordan's skillset, personality and impact on the sport.

One thing is for sure: both Bumgarner and Bonds could hit a baseball a heck of a lot better than Jordan ever did.

Nationals honor Gerardo Parra with 'Baby Shark' in World Series ring

Nationals honor Gerardo Parra with 'Baby Shark' in World Series ring

The Washington Nationals unveiled their 2019 World Series ring Sunday, and it has the usual bells and whistles.

Each custom ring features 55 genuine red rubies, 32 sapphires, 170 round diamonds and 23.2 carats of genuine gemstones.

Oh, and one Baby Shark.

What?

That's right. In honor #ForeverGiant Gerardo Parra, who started last season with the Giants before finishing it with the Nationals, the team engraved the "Baby Shark" on the inside of the ring.

Why "Baby Shark?" Because it was Parra's walk-up song for a part of the 2019 season in Washington, and it became the Nationals' rally call.

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According to NBC Sports Washington, Parra was going through a slump and wanted to change his song. He initially didn't want "Baby Shark," but it kept coming up on his phone because his 2-year-old daughter was continually listening to it.

“So, every time I pick, want to move the song -- every time move it -- the “Baby Shark” coming,” Parra told  NBC Sports Washington's Todd Dybas. “I said, no, I don’t want “Baby Shark.” I do it like three times like that. Baby Shark coming, “Baby Shark” coming. I said, hey, do “Baby Shark,” my song for my kids, my babies.”

Parra signed a minor league contract with the Giants last February, but he played in just 30 games before being released. Little did Parra know that his next stop would result in him winning a World Series ring.

And Parra probably never could have imagined that the "Baby Shark" song he never wanted would be immortalized on the 2019 World Series ring.

[RELATED: Parra impersonated by Batting Stance Guy]

In case you want a glimpse of the Nats' ring, here it is:

That's a nice piece of hardware.

While you wait for the global coronavirus pandemic to end, go ahead and sing "Doo doo doo doo doo doo, Baby Shark" to yourself.