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GIANT NOTES

General Manager Sounds Like He's Staying

October 25, 2002|Jason Reid

From Staff Reports

In strong comments Thursday about his future with the San Francisco Giants, General Manager Brian Sabean said he probably couldn't find a "greener pasture."

"I'm aware of what's going on in the world," said Sabean, whose contract expires after the World Series. "The pot of gold or whatever might be in the outside world, but I know anywhere I go I'm not going to have more autonomy, authority or latitude than I have here. And that says a lot."

Owner Peter Magowan last Saturday said a decision on Sabean, considered one of baseball's top executives, could come "a day or two" after the Giants' final game. Many clubs are expected to pursue Sabean, who was promoted to general manager in 1997 and is credited with much of the Giants' success.

"It's gratifying," Sabean said. "It makes you understand that if you do work hard and you're not worried about your next job, because of the effort it takes to worry about the job you have, in the end it pays off.

"But don't be naive enough to think that a general manager can or should be in the same [light] as somebody that's in uniform. If you take yourself too seriously you're going to end up flat on your [rear end]."

*

Tom Goodwin needed a boost after the Dodgers released him out of spring training this season.

"You get low," he said. "You begin to doubt yourself and whether you can still play this game."

The Giants believed in Goodwin, who was on the Dodger payroll for $3.5 million this season, signing the eight-year veteran for the minimum salary of $200,000.

It turned out to be a wise investment.

Goodwin played in 78 games, batting .260 with 16 stolen bases in 18 attempts. He had two game-winning hits against the Dodgers, whom the Giants held off for the NL wild-card berth.

"

It is a question that must be asked, even though the reporter thinks he knows the answer he'll get.

As a free agent after this season, Giant second baseman Jeff Kent figures to be in great demand by many clubs, perhaps the Dodgers among them. San Francisco was not thought to be high on Kent's list of favorites.

So you ask Kent where he thinks he's going.You figure he'll either politely decline to answer or bark at you for asking.

Wrong, wrong.

Kent was not only receptive, but candid.

"This throws a new wrinkle into it," he said of reaching the World Series.

It has, he says, made him start thinking seriously about staying with the Giants.

"This creates an environment," he said, "that I've never tasted before."

*

Kent isn't the only one who has been perceived as ready to leave the Giants when this World Series ends. Manager Dusty Baker, whose contract is up, is headed to the Seattle Mariners without a second thought, several sources have said.

Baker admitted that, when he realized Thursday he could be managing his last game at Pacific Bell Park in a Giant uniform, he felt a tinge of sadness.

"I thought about it this morning when I woke up," he said. "After that, I just forgot about it. This is no time to get melancholy. This is the time for us to push to the finish line."

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