Hall of Famer Joe Torre offers Giants' Bruce Bochy retirement advice


Hall of Famer Joe Torre offers Giants' Bruce Bochy retirement advice

Baseball Hall of Famer Joe Torre had a simple message for retiring Giants manager Bruce Bochy

"[In] retirement, keep some things in mind," Torre said in a pre-recorded video message on the Oracle Park scoreboard Tuesday. "Be happy. Be healthy. Be proud. And I'll see you in Cooperstown."

Torre, MLB's chief baseball officer, sat near the Giants dugout during their game Tuesday night against the Colorado Rockies, and Bochy and Torre briefly greeted one another after the tribute played. The game was the first of Bochy's final homestand as Giants manager, and Torre can relate to what Bochy is feeling.

The 79-year-old retired from managing after the 2010 season, which was his 29th in a major league dugout. Bochy's final season is his 25th. 

Torre told Giants broadcasters Duane Kuiper and Mike Krukow that he knew it was time to retire when, in his final season, he wasn't sure if his players could "hear me." He wasn't aware how dramatically different his life would feel when he no longer was managing. 

"You know, you don't realize how much it takes out of you until you stop doing it because you live with the stress on a daily basis," Torre told Kuiper and Krukow. "And you don't know any different because, whether it's in-season or out of season, there's something you're trying to think about that may help make you better. ... But once you stop, and now you go to sleep not caring about who won a game -- or not needing to win a game, I should say -- it makes a difference."

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Bochy doesn't have to worry about that transition just yet. He still has five games remaining on the homestand after Tuesday -- and five more chances to do what he does best. 

"I'll tell you what: He's special," Torre said. " ... He's a throwback. Right now, where baseball is with all the analytics, he's got personal touch -- still -- on a game-to-game basis."

Ever wonder what happened to Ashkon, creator of Giants' postseason anthem?

Ever wonder what happened to Ashkon, creator of Giants' postseason anthem?

Editor's note: Every Tuesday and Thursday during this sports hiatus, we'll answer questions that Bay Area sports fans long have debated in "Ever Wonder?" Third up in the series: What happened to Ashkon, the creator of the Giants' 2010 postseason anthem?

The Giants' 2010 postseason run was blanketed with “Don’t Stop Believing” blaring in the background, covered by singer/songwriter Ashkon.

Ashkon created his own Giants-themed lyrics to Journey's classic hit, which you probably heard one night in a dive bar you frequented.

The song was the unofficial anthem for that 2010 Giants squad, who went on to win the franchise's first World Series since the team moved to San Francisco in 1958.

So, what happened to Ashkon?

He details what he's up to in the video above, and also discusses where the idea for the song came from. 

It appears he hasn’t aged one bit. 

More from "Ever Wonder"

Why Gabe Kapler feels Giants will return with same strong spring energy


Why Gabe Kapler feels Giants will return with same strong spring energy

It has been less than a month since Gabe Kapler addressed his team for the final time. The Giants were having an energetic camp, one in which new ideas flowed and veterans and young players were fully buying into what Kapler and a 13-coach staff were bringing.

Baseball reality would have hit them on March 26. The Giants were scheduled to start their season against the Dodgers and Diamondbacks on the road, with those two NL West frontrunners then coming to Oracle Park. Today, the Giants would have been playing their 11th game, and they would have already had a pretty good idea of how big of a talent gap still had to be made up. 

The Giants knew during camp that they would be outgunned, but Kapler was hoping to make incremental gains in other areas. He wanted his team to out-compete and out-prepare opponents and felt good about the progress. It's unclear when baseball will resume and what kind of Spring Training 2.0 teams will have if it does, but Kapler is confident that what the Giants were building will remain.

On an interview that aired on this week's Giants Insider Podcast, Kapler explained why he thinks the good vibes from a month of spring training will carry over whenever the Giants are allowed to compete again. 

"I don't think that that's going to be a problem," he said. "I don't think I'm alone in assuming that when we get to baseball, and we're going to get back to baseball, but when we get back there, there's going to be so much energy and excitement and appreciation for the game that I just can't imagine that that won't spill over onto the field."

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That was something the staff tried to instill over a month in Scottsdale. Kapler preferred to keep things positive, but above all the Giants were about competition. Veterans like Evan Longoria noted early on that there was a different feel to drills, which were faster-paced and often pitted players against one another. At the time the Giants went their separate ways, there were still plenty of jobs up for grabs. Kapler had not named a fifth starter or closer, and much of the bullpen and bench mix remained a competition.

"Our players embraced and supported and endorsed the new coaching style, the competition-driven coaching style, the challenging drills that we implemented," Kapler said. "And I can't think of a reason why, when we get back to baseball, that they wouldn't be craving more of that and that our coaches wouldn't be enthusiastic about implementing it."

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On the podcast, Kapler discussed the day the Giants realize baseball was coming to a stop, how he's using a PlayStation game to get some managing work in, what the coaching staff is doing to try to stay sharp and how he's keeping in touch with his players. You can stream it here or download it on iTunes here.