Last year’s Opening Day was a strange one, but hey, at least there was baseball.
That’s not the case this year, with the COVID-19 pandemic throwing a wrench into professional sports and normal life as we know it. On KNBR we tried to give you the next best thing, inviting former Giants manager Bruce Bochy on for a chat with his old friends Murph & Mac.
Now back to last year’s Opening Day. In addition to being Bochy’s swan song, it was also the first for new VP of Baseball Operations Farhan Zaidi. Bizarrely the starting lineup featured two late Zaidi signings, outfielders Connor Joe and Michael Reed, who barely featured during spring training. Both players lasted just over a week with the big league club, and combined for one total hit.
On Thursday Bochy was asked about the situation, and admitted it was a little awkward.
“It was different, there’s no getting around it,” Bochy said. “Occasionally you’ll have a trade right before Opening Day that’s usually more of a marquee player, bigger name. But these were two guys who we really didn’t know. It was a little awkward I think for everybody in the club. We were looking for help in the outfield especially against left handers, you’re just hoping if things go right and the numbers show up that our guys are looking at, that it’s going to equate into the major leagues.
“It’s more about the chemistry of the club. They’ve spent six or seven weeks together, they’re getting ready for Opening Day, then you throw two guys out there that nobody knew. It was a little bit uncomfortable but again, at that time we were looking for help. Trust me, I was hoping these two would be the answer to go out there and do it.
“Son of a gun if both don’t go out and struggle. I think they had one or two hits in six or seven games. Even Farhan said ‘Okay it’s time.’ That is the first time I had been in that situation and to be honest it was a little awkward.”
Listen to the full interview below.