Already a San Francisco Phenomenon, Pablo Sandoval Made History in 2012
This year’s World Series wasn’t exactly one for the ages, but it was a chance for everyone else to discover something San Franciscans have long known: It’s hard not to love Pablo Sandoval. He struggled and rode the bench during the Giants’ 2010 World Series campaign, but his lack of contribution motivated him to lose weight and work with his brother Michael, a former minor leaguer, to study opposing pitchers’ tendencies more closely. The hard work paid off, and Sandoval earned a place in the record books with a three-homer game in Game 1 of this year’s World Series. Pandamonium is now at an all-time high, and Sandoval embraces the wild attention San Francisco gives him: “If you don’t want to be famous, this isn’t for you” (page 134).
Michael Rosenberg Talks with the Voice of the Fall
The most honest and most ridiculous thing you can say about Joe Buck is that he got his job because of his dad. The son of legendary broadcaster Jack Buck, Joe did not really grow up on sports. He grew up on sportscasting, and he began his career early, calling his first NFL game on Fox at age 25 and his first World Series at 27. Buck has cut down his workload in recent years in order to spend more time with his daughters, but in the climactic month when his football and baseball worlds collide, Michael Rosenberg reminds us Joe Buck is as good as it gets.
Miguel Cabrera may be the best hitter in baseball, but the Detroit Tigers are in the World Series because he’s an unselfish gamer who understands the team comes first. After winning the American League Triple Crown and leading his team to the American League pennant, third baseman Miguel Cabrera appears on this week’s regional cover. It marks the first time the Tigers have appeared on the cover since Justin Verlander on September 17, 2011.
He moved from first base to third base so the Tigers could sign Prince Fielder in January; he sprained his right ankle in mid-August, but waited a week to tell Detroit trainers and missed one game. While he is quick to highlight team accomplishments over his own, Cabrera’s Triple Crown season and lighter attitude have helped him shed the image he made after two alcohol-related arrests in 2009 and 2011.
Michael Rosenberg writes of Cabrera’s stretch run that was more than a Triple Crown clincher – it was a man and his bat making a mockery of the sport.
For baseball’s small-market October party crashers, the key to getting to the postseason was going global in the search of out-of-this-world talent. When Dan Duquette took over as general manager of the Orioles last November, he inherited a losing team pinned to the cellar floor of the American League East. As he searched for the fastest way to turn Baltimore into a winner, Duquette identified the international market as the quickest route to relevance.
Also in this week’s Sports Illustrated: The Chargers’ inability to win in the east, Clemson football is dancing with joy and David Beckham’s future in Los AngelesPosted: October 26, 2011
You’ve seen our World Series cover featuring the Rangers and Cardinals, read JaMarcus Russell’s side of the story and found out who the NFL’s fastest player is according to our weekly Players Poll. Here is what else awaits readers in the Oct. 31 issue of Sports Illustrated, on newsstands today.
PILE ON THE CHARGERS – DAMON HACK (@si_damonhack)
The Chargers’ 27–21 loss to the Jets on Sunday was the latest misstep in their recent history, when they have looked like a Super Bowl contender only to travel east and lose. Since 2000 they are a meager 8–18 on the road against the teams now in the AFC East and AFC North, including 1–4 at New England, 0–4 at Pittsburgh and 0–2 at Baltimore. For starting quarterback Philip Rivers, Sunday’s loss was his 10th in 11 road starts against the AFC East or AFC North since 2007. All of which solidifies a sentiment that has shadowed San Diego teams of recent vintage: that they are supremely talented and chronic underachievers (page 38).
On the Tablets: This week on his NFL podcast, senior writer Peter King (@SI_PeterKing) interviews Cowboys running back DeMarco Murray and Colts vice chairman Bill Polian. Plus, the Week 8 edition of his “Last Word on the NFL.”