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Humbled by the World Series

On the occasion of my retirement ceremony, Jayson Stark of ESPN (@jaysonst) tweeted:

We don’t usually salute retiring middle relievers. But
@JeremyAffeldt was one of the best in postseason history es.pn/1FLEtDb

The article he linked to said the following:

The Elias Sports Bureau notes that [Affeldt’s] streak of 22 consecutive postseason scoreless appearances trails Rivera’s mark by only one.

Within those scoreless appearances, Affeldt was near pristine when it came to escaping trouble caused by others. He stranded nine of 10 baserunners he inherited.

Affeldt faced 111 batters in his postseason career and allowed only one extra-base hit. Opponents slugged .168 against him, the lowest against any pitcher who faced at least 100 batters.

Fittingly, Affeldt’s best postseason appearance was his last one, when he pitched 2 1/3 scoreless innings for the San Francisco Giants in Game 7 of the World Series against his former team, the Kansas City Royals. It was the longest outing of his postseason career.

I don’t know how many times a reliever has been honored with a ceremony. It happens for elite guys, obviously, closers and Hall-of-Famers like Mariano Rivera. I mean, Mariano spent his whole career at Yankee Stadium. That was huge. I just don’t know how often another team has done it for a relief pitcher. I’m sure there might have been a couple. I just think it has been so rare, though, that nobody can remember it. That’s what Jayson Stark was saying.

In that article he linked to, you can see why he said it. I got honored because of what I did in the playoffs. I was a big part of those three rings. That’s a huge part of the legacy that I left.

Now is my chance to reflect a little bit on what I did as a player. I didn’t want to do it while I played, because I was trying to stay hungry. But now, it’s good to be able to reflect back on what I did, especially in the playoffs. I put a lot of work into being able to do what I did. I put a lot of work into mentally being able to handle that. And so now, to be able to say that I got to do those things, and I was a part of those victories, is very humbling. It really humbles me to say that. I’m just so very honored that I got to be a part of it.

And it happened perfectly. It happened exactly as God planned it, exactly as it was supposed to happen. I think it is pretty awesome that God opened the doors that He was able to open, and I was able to walk through them and do what I did in the playoffs.

I really felt God’s smile on the entire ceremony. There at the end, He smiled.

Being a part of those three rings honors me more than I can say. Still, there was so much more to being with the Giants than helping them win three World Series. They are an incredible organization. I’ll tell you more about that next time. See you Thursday.

2 thoughts on “Humbled by the World Series

  1. Great essay. Greater career and numbers. Greatest — your integrity and Christian witness. One, two, three strikes, they’re out: you made it look so easy! God bless you in the next season of your life.

  2. I agree Rick. In my mind, Jeremy is known for his integrity and witness. I like to think that the Giants recognized this when they decided to honor him. His greatness on the mound was secondary.

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