Carl Yastrzemski

Giants' Mike Yastrzemski lives out boyhood dream of playing at Fenway Park

Giants' Mike Yastrzemski lives out boyhood dream of playing at Fenway Park

It's difficult to imagine Mike Yastrzemski's first visit to Fenway Park as a major league player going any better.

Not only have the Giants won each of the first two games of the series with the Red Sox, San Francisco's 29-year-old rookie outfielder also managed to hit a home run over the center-field wall in the first one, an act his grandfather Carl performed countless times all those years ago.

Hours before that special moment, Mike took a walk around the field at Fenway with NBC Sports Bay Area's Amy Gutierrez, soaking in the environment in which he learned to love the game of baseball.

"A lot of memories being brought up coming back here," the younger Yastrzemski told Amy G. "Moments that I've had in the stands more than anything. The smell in the air and just the overall visuals of being 10 years old and falling love with baseball and seeing some really cool moments."

Being the grandson of one of the most revered players in Red Sox history had its benefits, no doubt, but it also couldn't have been easy growing up in such a large shadow. However, as Yastrzemski explained, he grew to appreciate that shadow, rather than feel compelled to make his own larger one.

"You grow up with it and you think there's pressure when you're young, but then when you understand the magnitude of the impact that he had on this city, I stopped feeling pressure and started feeling pride," he said. "You start to understand how much of an impact he had and the numbers that he put up and how essentially unattainable they are in today's game.

"There is no pressure. I get to do what I love because I fell in love with the same thing that he did."

As Yastrzemski and Amy G made their way around Fenway, they eventually came upon the famous Green Monster in left field. On the inside of the scoreboard -- an area Yastrzemski admitted he hadn't been in for close to 20 years -- they came across countless signatures all over the internal walls. Yastrzemski revealed that those walls were critical in his ascension to becoming a major league player.

"A staple of my life was baseball and this wall," he told Amy G, "and I felt like I kind of used it as a dream and ambition and a way to kind of push a little further than maybe I even should have."

All that pushing culminated in his first major league call-up at the ripe age of 29 years old. It might have taken longer than he would have preferred. But, Yastrzemski says he's better able to appreciate it now due to the long journey it took to get here.

[RELATED: Yaz to Yaz: Watch Giants rookie catch first pitch from Carl]

"When you're young and you get here, you might feel that pressure and say, 'You know, I have to perform to a certain extent or else I'm going to be back and forth for my whole career. I don't want to be that guy.' Whereas for me, I was looking at it as: I just want one day. And if I get one day to just sit in the dugout and put on the uniform, I'm good.

"Every single extra step is just one more thing that I get to say, 'Wow, that was really cool.'

Hitting a home run in your first game at your Hall of Fame grandfather's old home park? Now that's really cool.

Watch Giants' Mike Yastrzemski catch first pitch from Carl at Fenway Park

Watch Giants' Mike Yastrzemski catch first pitch from Carl at Fenway Park

A night after hitting a home run at the ballpark his grandfather once called home, Giants rookie outfielder Mike Yastrzemski made another special memory at Fenway Park on Wednesday night.

The 29-year-old caught the ceremonial first pitch ahead of San Francisco's game with the Boston Red Sox from a very special pitcher: his grandfather, Baseball Hall of Famer and Red Sox legend Carl Yastrzemski.

[RELATED: Bochy will be in a league of his own with 2,000 career wins]

The elder Yastrzemski played 3,308 games in 23 seasons with the Red Sox, winning a Most Valuable Player award when he won the Triple Crown in 1967. The younger Yastrzemski made his MLB debut this season, and he hit his 20th home run of his first big league campaign Tuesday night at Fenway.

Mike called that feeling "special," but Wednesday's first pitch just might have topped it. 

Mike Yastrzemski explains how special it is to play at Fenway Park

Mike Yastrzemski explains how special it is to play at Fenway Park

"Everybody dreams about going home and playing in front of their hometown."

When Giants rookie outfielder Mike Yastrzemski stepped on to the field at Fenway Park last night, he was home.

But it was more than just a place he grew up. He was back where it all started for his grandfather, Hall of Famer Carl Yastrzemski. But now it was Mike's turn to put on a show in front of Boston Red Sox fans.

Sure, it's a story you've heard repeated many times, but it's one that needs to be told. 

"I grew up as a diehard Red Sox fan, just like every kid growing up here," Mike said in an interview posted by the Giants.

Mike knew it was a special moment, but not just for him -- one for everyone who watched his grandfather play during his 23-year career. And he was happy to take advantage of it. 

"You never know if it'll happen again."

The media scrum engulfed the 29-year-old who took questions from the dugout. Then the two were reunited, walking along the field that witnessed the entirety of Carl's career.

MLB Network's Peter Gammons also spoke to Carl and Mike, and Carl compared seeing his grandson play at Fenway that of his 1967 season. The same season where Carl hit for the Triple Crown and led the league in multiple other categories including on-base percentage (.418), slugging (.622) and OPS (1.040). He also earned an All-Star selection, his sole MVP honor and a Gold Glove Award.  

Carl was thrilled knowing the Yastrzemski name would be announced at the park that night. And Mike knew the responsibilities it takes carrying that name.  

[RELATED: Yaz homers at Fenway, just like his grandpa]

"To be able to share an experience like this is special."

When it was time for Mike to take his first at-bat at Fenway of his professional career, he rightfully received a standing ovation and would later hit a home run. 

It was then we were reminded just how beautiful this game is.