SAN FRANCISCO – Almost all of the San Francisco Giants’ biggest wins in history ended with a “buster hug.”
Since the franchise moved west from New York in 1958, the Giants have won three World Series titles and Buster Posey was behind the plate to win each of them.
Posey is not a five-tool player. Willie Mess was and will never be compared to Barry Bonds, but he is one of the greatest players in the history of the franchise and he is still building on his legacy. The legacy includes her celebratory hug, which was felt by relief Dominic Lyon after recording the final of the 2021 regular season on Sunday.
“It was great,” Leon said. “That boy is legendary. He is guaranteed a future Hall of Fame. This is a moment I will remember forever.
After eight innings on Sunday, the Giants led Pedres 11-4, with Giants manager Gabby Kepler calling on Lyon to make the ninth pitch. The right-hander entered for the 57th time this year and faced the best regular season of his career with an innings of 1-2-3 and hitting two of the three peddlers.
When Lyon fired a 96.6 mph fastball behind the swing of San Diego punch hitter Eric Hossmer to win the Giants’ first National League West title since 2012, he roared with excitement before embracing Posey.
“The buster is very cool, calm and assembled all the time, so it’s great to show some emotion,” Leon said.
Lyon said he was unaware of the history of “Buster Hug” before Sunday’s game, but he will never forget the moment when he joined a small club of recipients, including Brian Wilson, Sergio Romeo and Madison Bamgarner was among them.
“It could have been any of us and we would all feel good about six, all seven or all eight (relievers), we would feel good about anyone out there,” Leon said. “But I wanted to get involved in the game. I was excited. I was pumped.”
Lyon finished the season with a 1.51 ERA and is one of six giants to throw at least 50 innings this year while posting a sub 3.00 ERA. This year, like many other San Francisco clocks, was a frivolous acquisition by Farhan Zaidi, president of Lyon Baseball Operations, who signed a minor league deal with Travelman Reliever last off-season.
Clemson Product has won more than 250 major league games, but his career was 4.09 ERA and he did not end the season with an ERA from 2017 to 4.50 when he joined the Giants.
After a brilliant spring at Scottsdale, Lyon spent the first two months of the season with Triple-A Sacramento before becoming one of Kepler’s most reliable relievers during the second half of the year.
With a chance to secure the club’s 107th victory and defeat the Dodgers in a historic split race, Kepler demanded a final out from Lyon on Sunday and the reward for doing so was embraced by his catcher. Which he will never forget.
For the west pic.twitter.com/wDTKvvcT87.
– SFGiants (FSFGiants) October 3, 2021.