SAN FRANCISCO — Bruce Bochy helped bring this city three World Series championships, and upon his much-anticipated return Friday night, fans greeted him with nearly as many standing ovations to match, a reception the former Giants manager described afterward as “humbling and overwhelming.”
When Bochy was introduced before the game, public address announcer Renel Brooks-Moon barely had time to get the words out before fans erupted in their first round of cheers. In the middle of the third inning, fans broke out in chants of “Bo-chy!” as the Giants played a tribute video on the center field scoreboard.
“I can’t thank the Giants organization enough for what they did tonight,” Bochy told reporters postgame. “That was really, really cool for me and the fans. I can’t thank them enough. That’s what I should be doing. They’ve been so great to me and you never know how you’re going to be received when you come back. It’s a little emotional. It’s a big game so you want to be locked in on that but it still is pretty full and I can’t thank them enough.”
Bochy emerged from the visitor’s dugout and tipped his cap to the crowd upon the roaring reception pregame; he acknowledged them again from the top step of the dugout after the video in the third inning.
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It was a different viewing angle than Bochy had grown accustomed to during his 13 years in San Francisco, during which he led the team to World Series championships in 2010, 2012 and 2014, and scored the second-most wins by a manager in franchise history.
It was Bochy’s first time back at Oracle Park in uniform since the final game of the 2019 season and his first time managing from the opposing dugout since his final season leading the Padres, in 2006, before he was hired in San Francisco in 2007.
Bochy’s Rangers got the best of his former club, 2-1.
“It is humbling and overwhelming,” he said of his return. “A big piece of my heart is here with my 13 years that I spent here. It’s really, really special.”