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Manny Pacquiao: A good luck charm for the San Francisco Giants?

Joseph Herron Updated
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After demolishing Hall of Fame fight legend Oscar de la Hoya in December of 2008, Filipino icon Manny Pacquiao's popularity soared through the stratosphere while becoming one of the most recognizable athletes in the entire world.

During his historic run in 2009, when he dramatically stopped veteran champions Ricky Hatton and Miguel Cotto, the sport's only eight division world champion began a tradition of throwing out the first pitch before a San Francisco Giants Major League baseball game while promoting his upcoming HBO PPV events.

Before Congressman Pacquiao began his promotional visits to the beautiful AT&T Park in San Francisco, California, the Bay City's beloved San Francisco Giants were currently enduring a fifty-six year drought without a World Series Championship.

Although the storied franchise had come extremely close to winning it all in 2002, behind the bat of controversial figure Barry Bonds, the perennial contenders of the National League West ultimately fell short in a heartbreaking, game seven loss to the Anaheim Angels.

While the die-hard fans of the San Francisco "Baseball Giants" never lost faith in their "Boys of Summer", many critics began to wonder if they would ever enjoy another championship season ever again...at least until Manny Pacquiao decided to visit McCovey Cove before the Giant's historic 2010 run.

After the initial visit from the legendary Pac-Monster, the culture miraculously began to change within the famed "Paris of the West".

With hopes resting on the mighty arm of the half-Filipino, Cy Young winner, Tim Lincecum, the San Francisco Giants made it back to the big dance the following year and finally won it all...beating the heavily favored Texas Rangers three games to one in the best of seven, "2010 Fall Classic".

Since the Pacman decided to invade the Giants clubhouse in 2009, the San Fran faithful have enjoyed three World Series titles in just five years, winning the trophy in 2010, 2012, and 2014.

Is Manny Pacquiao the Giants organization's secret weapon and good luck charm, or is their new winning culture merely coincidental?

Let's examine their most recent effort, the 2014 Championship season.

When the 35 year old future Hall of Famer made his lone 2014 visit to AT&T Park with current WBO Junior Welterweight titlist Chris Algieri on August 29, the Giants were three games out of first, trailing the talented Los Angeles Dodgers for the NL West division lead. Even with veteran skipper Bruce Bochy steering the ship once again, most critics and analysts predicted the popular LA team to win the pennant and represent the National League in the upcoming "Fall Classic".

Despite falling short of catching the Dodgers to end the regular season, the Giants began the playoff season with a bang by blowing out the Pittsburgh Pirates in a one-game, Wildcard Playoff on October 1, by a score of "8-0".

The "Wildcard" Giants then went on another amazing playoff run, only losing two games in both divisional series' against the favored Washington Nationals and St. Louis Cardinals to earn another trip to the World Series.

Although the courageous orange and black was pushed to the dramatic seventh game against the AL representative Kansas City Royals, the Giants eventually pulled it out once again to win their third World Series Trophy in five years.
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Was Manny's visit to the Giants' locker room before the start of their amazing 2014 Playoff run coincidental, or is Pacquiao really San Francisco's "ace in the hole"?

As an unwritten rule within the time honored sport of baseball, among players and fans alike, an organization would be wise to respect the streak and humor the superstition.

So don't be surprised if the San Francisco Giants ballclub asks Manny Pacquiao to throw out the first pitch to begin the 2015 MLB season.


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