San Francisco Giants: The Biggest Moments From Departed Giants

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Oct 29, 2014; Kansas City, MO, USA; San Francisco Giants starting pitcher Ryan Vogelsong hoists the Commissioners Trophy after game seven of the 2014 World Series against the Kansas City Royals at Kauffman Stadium. Mandatory Credit: John Rieger-USA TODAY Sports

Ryan Vogelsong

In his five years with the Giants, Ryan Vogelsong had so many great moments. There was his re-debut on April 18th, 2011 in the Major Leagues after almost five years away. There was his first start back in the big leagues on April 28th, 2011, when he gave up two runs in 5.2 innings, while striking out eight to earn his first big league win in over five and a half years. He was named an All-Star in 2011, and was named the Giants’ Willie Mac Award winner that same year. But his best moment as a Giant may have come on October 28th, 2012.

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Vogelsong didn’t pitch that day, but the Giants clinched their second World Series championship in three years, and Vogelsong became a champion for the first time. Vogelsong hoisting the Commissioner’s Trophy for the first time in the cool Detroit night was the culmination of 15 years of hard work as a professional baseball player. From prospect to big leaguer to playing in Japan to minor league invitee, Vogelsong took a strange route to that moment. After all those years of simply trying, Vogelsong achieved what every player dreams of: winning the World Series.

He wasn’t just along for the ride, either. Vogelsong was a key component in the Giants’ rotation during the run. In four starts that October, Vogelsong threw 24.2 innings, allowed just three runs, and the Giants won each game. Vogelsong and the Giants would win another World Series in 2014, and while Vogelsong wasn’t as effective the second time around (four games, 12.1 innings, nine runs allowed), the Giants did win all three of his starts.

After a very successful five-year run with the Giants, Vogelsong is joining the Pittsburgh Pirates again, the only other big league team for which he has pitched. Coming full circle twice is quite the accomplishment.

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