NFL teams: Why can’t we have fun like this?pic.twitter.com/jy4kSrXnW9
— Jason McIntyre (@jasonrmcintyre) October 11, 2016
Once upon a time, Conor Gillaspie was a first round pick for the San Francisco Giants, in the same draft where they took Buster Posey. He got a late September call-up as a 20-year-old in 2008, but never really stuck with San Francisco. The Giants traded him to the White Sox, where he spent 2.5 years as a starter, before briefly being claimed by the Angels last year. He was released after the season, and returned to San Francisco, no longer a hot prospect.
In February, upon re-signing with the Giants, he had this to say:
“A lot of clubs that have their bad apples and their guys you can’t approach and you can’t talk to, and I was one of those guys at one point,” said Gillaspie, who returned to the Giants on a minor league contract and has a viable shot to make the club in a bench role.
“I’m looking forward to turning that around and being a guy who’s here for everybody.”
Has he ever. Gillaspie, appreciating things after hitting the bottom, has been the feel-good story of the playoffs. He hit the wildcard game-winning home run off of Jeurys Familia. Somehow, the left-handed batter outdid himself tonight off another closer. With the Giants trailing by one in the 8th, with two on, and lefty flamethrower Aroldis Chapman in the game, Gillaspie turned one around and hit a triple–the first ever triple allowed by Chapman to a left-handed batter.
Not bad for a guy who was in need of a second chance just a year ago.