Andres Torres was a great Giant
Posted on December 7, 2011
Andres Torres of the San Francisco Giants bats against the Philadelphia Phillies during Game 5 of the NLCS at AT&T Park on October 21, 2010 in San Francisco, California. (Photo by Brad Mangin)
Last night the San Francisco Giants sent outfielder Andres Torres (along with Ramon Ramirez) to the New York Mets for outfielder Angel Pagan. This was not a shock after Torres had a down year in 2011, but I know there are many Giants fans today who are sad to see the Giants former center fielder leave for New York.
Giants fans will never forget how important Torres was to their 2010 World Series Championship team. Torres played center field and held down the lead-off spot for most of the year. His smiling face, blazing speed, and brilliance in the outfield helped spark the Giants to their unlikely title. Torres was so important to his teammates that he was voted by them as the 2010 winner of the “Willie Mac Award.” This award is given annually to the Giants player who best exemplifies the spirit and leadership consistently shown by Willie McCovey throughout his long career.
Torres is one of those rare players in the game of baseball who is a genuinely nice guy. “What a joy he was to be around. He was one of those guys who never had a bad day. He always enjoys being around people and he’s so thankful for everything that’s happened to him in his career,” Bruce Bochy told Giants beat writer Andrew Baggarly.
“I’ve always believed the players who resonate with fans are the ones who simply appreciate what they have and what they get to do for a living. They never button up a jersey without a little bit of lightness in their chest. I’m not sure I’ve ever covered a player who was more grateful, more genuine than Andres the Giant,” Baggarly wrote in his blog Extra Baggs today.
I always enjoyed shooting Torres. He is a switch-hitter who looks good from both sides of the plate and is always running around the bases hard and sliding all over the place. He also has amazing smile that is always on his face, especially during batting practice. Torres gave all he had with the Giants and the fans loved him for it. Last year was a bummer for him, and his bad numbers helped convince Giants brass that he was expendable.
One of my favorite things about Torres when he wore the orange and black was the way he would jump in the air with teammate and roomie Pablo Sandoval on the field after each Giants win (see above). This was always a can’t-miss nice picture that seemed to look good no matter where I shot it from. I hope Torres find a willing partner in New York to celebrate with after each Mets win.
My favorite image of Torres, and one that will always be in my mind when I hear his name, is the picture above of him holding the World Series trophy over his head in Texas. The joy on his face, and the love for his teammates is so apparent in this picture. Andres The Giant is now Andres The Met. New York fans will LOVE him. Giants fans- you have until July 30, 2012 to figure out how you will welcome Torres back to AT&T Park when the Mets make their only visit to San Francisco this coming season. I have a feeling he will get a standing ovation.