Jul 23, 2013, 3:24 PM PDT
The San Francisco Giants are about to do something they’ve never done before — bat first in a game at their home stadium. The rare occurrence will take place in the second game of a doubleheader against the Cincinnati Reds. After the first game, the Giants will switch from their home to their road uniforms, bat in the top half of the inning, and take the field in the bottom of the frame.
This is happening because on July 4, a Giants-Reds game was rained out in Cincinnati, and both teams agreed this would be the most convenient way to make up the game. It actually couldn’t have worked out better for the Giants.
While the Giants will be acting as the road team at home, under MLB rules they will still be considered the home team statistically. They also have the luxury of sleeping in their own beds, playing in front of their own fans and not having to deal with a plane flight.
The Giants franchise was established in 1883, and the closest they’ve ever come to batting first on their own field was when they played at their former home, the Polo Grounds, against the Mets in 1962.
While it is an extremely rare occurrence, the situation that will be taking place today at AT&T Park has played out recently with other teams. Here’s a list compiled by our resident Comcast SportsNet historian, David Feldman, of all the times an MLB team has posed as the road team at their own park.
No place like
June 2011: SEA vs. FLA at Safeco Field (3 games) – U2 Concert in Miami
June 2010: PHI vs. TOR at Citizens Bank Park (3 games) – G20 Summit in Toronto
Sept. 26, 2007: SEA vs. CLE at Safeco Field (1 game) – Snow Out in Cleveland
Feldman notes that before the Mariners-Indians game in 2007, no team since at least 1913 had been asked to bat first on their own turf.
None of the Giants players seemed to think it was that strange, and it likely won’t be, if they can keep the Reds from winning the game in walk-off fashion at AT&T Park. There’s no denying that would be weird.
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