Sunday, May 18, 2008

Magowan: Rags To Riches But Without Rings

Today Giants managing general partner Peter Magowan announced his resigning from his position(s) of Giants president and managing general partner, making way for another owning partner and member of the organization to step up. This is a bittersweet thing. Magowan led a group of investors in an eleventh-hour buy of the Giants (actually it was about 12:30am) from an already made deal to a group from Tampa Bay. Imagine the Tampa Bay Giants. Ick.

Their wild dreams came true to a great extent and put San Francisco on the baseball map in a number of ways. The Giants former owner Bob Lurie put the team up for sale following the '92 season. Magowan rescued the Giants from sure ridicule in Tampa. Not only this, but this new ownership group immediately and stealthily signed Barry Bonds without the action from a general manager. They also recruited Jon Miller, baseball announcer extraordinaire, and built the most popular and widely acclaimed new stadium in all of baseball. The Giants sold out the entire first season, and have drawn over 3 million fans for 8 consecutive years. Giants fans were treated to amazing home run record chasing events by Bonds - along with 5 consecutive MVP awards (one from Kent) - and also saw a World Series and an All-Star game, not to mention the most competitive team in all of baseball. In the 8 years from 1997 through 2004, the Giants played only 11 regular season games that did not have a direct affect on their post-season destiny. The Bonds era saw the Giants run up the third best record in all of baseball.

Yet all this happened without a World Series ring. The current state of the team brings more questions than answers, and it appears that it will be a long while before they put themselves in another position to win it all. And God only knows that they've had a multitude of those chances. All in all, the current ownership group seems to have been more marketing than performance, more show than go. Maybe it's time for a change.

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