News Column

Giants' Pablo Sandoval Gets Tweet from Venezuelan President Chavez

Oct. 26, 2012

Alex Pavlovic and Carl Steward

Pablo Sandoval
Pablo Sandoval

Giants third baseman Pablo Sandoval's prolific night didn't end when he walked off the AT&T Park field after hitting three home runs in Game 1 of the World Series. Sandoval returned to his locker and found 300 text messages from friends and family.

"It's so exciting how the people watched and paid attention to all the things in the game," Sandoval said Thursday before the Giants defeated the Detroit Tigers, 2-0, in Game 2. "They're just excited to be a part of this."

Sandoval got another surprise when he logged onto Twitter, finding hundreds of congratulatory messages, including a tweet from Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez.

Sandoval has never met Chavez, but he plans to play for Venezuela in the upcoming World Baseball Classic and said he is excited to return to his home country this offseason.

"I'm the kind of guy that spends time with fans out there, spends time with kids," he said. "That's what makes me happy out there."

Late Wednesday night, Sandoval retweeted messages from several athletes, including former Giants postseason star Cody Ross, Venezuelan golfer Jhonattan Vegas and longtime major leaguer Bobby Abreu. But one message stood out.

Matt Kemp of the rival Los Angeles Dodgers tweeted a "panda" hashtag and wrote, "Wow! That's all I can say."

"That means a lot to me," Sandoval said. "I know that guy, because we went to the All-Star game together, so we talk a lot. He's one of the best hitters in the big leagues. For me, that was exciting."

- Commissioner Bud Selig said there remains no timetable to decide on whether the A's can move to San Jose.

Speaking before the game, Selig deflected most questions about the A's ballpark issue, which has dragged on more than 3 1/2 years with no resolution.

Selig declined to comment on whether Oakland remains a realistic site for a new venue, whether he expects a resolution before he steps down as commissioner, or whether he would consider it a failure if the A's don't get a new stadium during his tenure.

"I don't feel any pressure," Selig said. "The only thing ultimately that will guide me - on every issue, including this one - is what I think is in the best interest of baseball. That is the only pressure I'll ever feel."

The next round of owners meetings take place in November, but Selig said the issue is "not on the agenda."

Selig was seen talking to Giants President Larry Baer and Corey Busch, who is part of the three-man committee Selig appointed to study the A's stadium issue, before Game 1 at AT&T Park. Selig said he has not met with A's managing partner Lew Wolff since arriving in the Bay Area but that he has talked to Wolff on the phone recently.

- Selig said he expects instant replay to be expanded next season to include borderline fair/foul calls down the baselines and for trapped balls. He also confirmed that the one-game wild card playoff format will remain.

- The Giants' 8-3 win over the Detroit Tigers set a record-low television rating for a World Series opener. Fox said Wednesday night's game received a 7.6 rating and 12 share and that it was seen by 12.2 million viewers, according to fast national ratings by Nielsen Media Research.

The rating was a 13 percent drop from last year's opener between the St. Louis Cardinals and the Texas Rangers.



Source: (c)2012 San Jose Mercury News (San Jose, Calif.) Distributed by Mclatchy-Tribune News Service.


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