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Pablo Sandoval activated for one special at bat

San Diego Padres v San Francisco Giants

SAN FRANCISCO, CA - SEPTEMBER 01: Pablo Sandoval #48 of the San Francisco Giants returns to the dugout after an at bat against the San Diego Padres during the seventh inning at Oracle Park on September 1, 2019 in San Francisco, California. The San Diego Padres defeated the San Francisco Giants 8-4. (Photo by Jason O. Watson/Getty Images)

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A week ago it was announced that Pablo Sandoval needed Tommy John surgery, seemingly ending his season. And it did end it for all practical purposes. Yesterday, however, the Giants -- with an assist from the expanded September roster -- made an exception for him for a good reason.

The team activated the injured Sandoval so he could make one last at bat. A last at bat for his longtime manager Bruce Bochy and, possibly, his last at bat, ever, as a San Francisco Giant.

The crowd gave Sandoval a lengthy standing ovation when he came on to the on-deck circle in the seventh inning and continued to cheer him as he was announced as a pinch hitter. He only saw two pitches: first a called strike and then a fastball with which he made contact, hitting a slow tapper to short:

Sandoval on the experience:

Just one of those moments you don’t want to forget. I didn’t get the result I wanted, but I got the best result, the love from the fans.

Bochy, on what he said as he greeted Sandoval when he returned to the dugout:

I said, ‘It’s been a joy.’ Obviously we were hoping to get a base hit there, but I think he saw how much he’s loved here with the crowd. What a great ovation they gave him.

Jeff Samardzija:

He deserved that and a lot more. Everything he’s done for this organization is unbelievable, just how clutch he’s been. Pablo’s a top-notch guy and a great teammate.

Nice gesture by the Giants, for sure.

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