Giants

Why Bruce Bochy likely will manage games next spring after retirement

Why Bruce Bochy likely will manage games next spring after retirement

SAN FRANCISCO -- The odds are good that you'll see Bruce Bochy back in the dugout next March, just not for an MLB team, or the Giants. Bochy is expected to manage Team France in next spring's WBC qualifier, although he said that he has not fully committed to the job yet. 

"I'm talking to them," Bochy said. "I told them we would talk again at the end of the season."

Bochy is the only French-born manager in MLB history, but that's not the only reason this job, which people close to him expect him to formally accept soon, will be special.

The tentative plan is for his son, Brett, to pitch for the team and his brother Joe, a scout for the Giants, to be part of the coaching staff. Brett Bochy pitched for his father once already, making seven memorable appearances in 2014 and 2015. He retired after the 2015 season. Longtime coach Ron Wotus might also be on staff, depending on his status with the Giants. 

[RELATED: How MadBum grew close with Bochy]

Bochy, born in Landes de Bussac, met with the French delegation earlier this summer. If he does take the job, qualifying would begin next spring for a tournament that will take place in 2021. The French team is scheduled to play March 22-27 in Tucson in a bracket that includes Germany, Spain and other countries not known as traditional powers. 

Father in Barry Bonds jersey accidentally hits son in head with ball

bondsarodap.jpg
AP

Father in Barry Bonds jersey accidentally hits son in head with ball

Everyone could use a little laughter in their life right now.

When a fan asked for the outtakes, high school baseball coach Kyle Tognazzini obliged with a pretty hilarious clip from his backyard wiffle ball battles with his son.

The poor kid hung in there though and didn’t even take a fall after that line drive bounced off his head. His dad definitely emulated the player whose jersey he’s wearing with that bat speed.

[RELATED: How to watch full Giants-Dodgers sim from 'MLB The Show 20']

In another outtake, Tognazzini showed his son’s reaction to the comeback, repeatedly beaning his dad with pitches.

Every family is finding a different way to navigate these social distancing guidelines, some just seem to have more fun doing it.

Why Oracle Park stands above rest as Bay Area's best live sports venue

oracleparkusatsi.jpg
USATSI

Why Oracle Park stands above rest as Bay Area's best live sports venue

We really are blessed here in the Bay Area.

From the waters of McCovey Cove brushing up against Oracle Park to the shiny panache of the Warriors’ new digs down the street at Chase Center to the South Bay behemoth that is Levi’s Stadium, Northern California features some beautiful homes for its professional teams.

NBC Sports Bay Area compiled an eight-team bracket of the best arenas and stadiums the Bay has to offer on social media Saturday, giving fans the opportunity to anoint a champion. Some of these decisions were easy, others not so much.

We’ll start with the top left side of the bracket and work counterclockwise.

Oracle Park vs. Candlestick

Obviously 49ers fans who were around for the dynastic run through the 1980s and 1990s have a special place in their heart for the team’s former stomping grounds. But this is an easy decision. 

Oracle Park has been through plenty of names but has maintained the beauty and charm that have consistently made it among MLB fans’ favorite stadiums overall. Looking out over the field and out into the San Francisco Bay on a Sunday afternoon, there are few views in professional sports that equate.

Candlestick was a shell of its former self by the end, not to mention that unbearable wind. Plenty of championships and success were had by both the 49ers and Giants at Candlestick, but in terms of where the average fan would want to watch a game, Oracle Park clearly is the choice.

Chase Center vs. Coliseum

This must be a typo, right?

The Coliseum has plenty of history in its past, but any stadium that has sewage seeping into the dugouts and locker rooms doesn’t belong anywhere near a list of the best facilities.

There wasn’t much winning in the inaugural NBA season at Chase Center for the Warriors, but it’s pretty easy to see when arriving why the total cost of the arena is north of $2 billion. 

Chase Center wins in a landslide.

Levi’s Stadium vs. Earthquakes Stadium

Although Levi’s Stadium always has been met with mixed reviews by 49ers fans, it still is quite an impressive facility on appearance alone. The stadium also was well ahead of its time when it came to technology.

Earthquakes Stadium, meanwhile, is the smallest in Major League Soccer, having been constructed back in 2015. While it did build what at the time was the largest outdoor bar in North America, the allure of the average Bay Area sports fan never was fully captured.

Levi’s comes out on top here, although the idea of a massive outdoor bar sounds pretty enticing once these social distancing guidelines are lifted.

SAP Center vs. Oakland Arena (formerly Oracle)

The atmosphere of a Sharks game at SAP Center is excellent, and the team has brought some incredible moments to the fans in the South Bay, including most recently the incredible third-period comeback against the Vegas Golden Knights in last year’s Stanley Cup Playoffs. 

But there was no experience in the NBA like a playoff game inside “Roaracle.” The noise and raucous environment made life miserable for all of the Warriors’ postseason foes. Although the team clinched just one of its three recent NBA titles at Oracle, there are way more than a handful of iconic moments in team history that played out inside the hallowed halls of Oakland’s largest basketball arena.

Although the arena no longer is hosting any NBA action, the endless memories and atmosphere put it over the top of the SAP Center.

Semifinals

Oracle Park vs. Chase Center

This one is tricky.

Chase Center likely wins out based on appearance alone, but Oracle Park has so many more quintessential moments in Giants’ history, with the team bringing home three World Series titles in five seasons.

Both have a waterfront location and barely are a mile apart. 

Until the Warriors can bring their winning ways across the Bay, Oracle Park sneaks by here in probably the tightest matchup of this mini-tournament.

Oakland Arena vs. Levi’s Stadium

This one is tougher than it sounds. Levi’s Stadium is so far superior from a technology perspective, and we finally got to hear postseason roars in Santa Clara when the Niners won two playoff games in 2019 at home, both in commanding fashion.

But there was something special about Oakland Arena during a playoff series that can’t be replicated by any stadium or arena in the Bay.

It’s hard to explain without being in it, but the explosion of euphoria that took over the arena when Steph Curry or Klay Thompson would hit a big shot late in a playoff game or even a decent regular-season game is unmatched.

Oakland Arena advances.

[RELATED: Why Steph is the Bay Area's all-time favorite MVP athlete]

Final

Oracle Park vs. Oakland Arena

The folks over at the Oracle corporate offices must be smiling here, as the company name has preceded both of these special venues. 

Similar championship and tradition histories make this decision arduous.

But for a combination of a great fan experience and a facility rich with winning heritage, it has to be China Basin and Oracle Park that takes the cake here. Plus, it's hard to beat those garlic fries.

Hopefully, soon we can return to all of these venues and enjoy a game in-person, as American sports remain entirely on pause while we battle the coronavirus.