Today is the end of the road for a lot of familiar baseball names. Tim Salmon finishes with 299 homers after fourteen seasons in Anaheim. Looks like Frank Robinson is coming home after a halfway decent career: Hall of Fame as a player and top 50 in wins as a manager, as well as being the first black manager. I empathized with Vin Scully on the Dodgers broadcast as he hoped — tried to will, even — the San Francisco fans to stand and applaud their manager Felipe Alou in the ninth inning. "Oh, come on," Vinny complained as the crowd sat quietly. When Alou got to the dugout after his last pitching change for the Giants, Vinnie didn't hide his disappointment. "I mean, that would have been nice."
Indeed. Felipe predates Willie McCovey and Juan Marichal in Giants lore, and the Alous should be recognized as the first family of baseball's infusion of players from the Dominican Republic. Felipe came up with the Giants in 1958, and someone from the clan has been part of the game almost ever since. Brother Matty came up to the Giants in 1960; Jesus got there in 1963. On Sept. 22, the Alous started across the outfield and batted one after another. That generation went on to play in 5,129 major league games. Moises, Felipe's son, came up with the Pirates in 1990 and has played in 1840 games so far. He had a decent year this year at age 40 and could keep going if he wants. But Felipe is probably heading home to Santo Domingo after managing 2,054 games and winning more than half of them.
Tim Salmon finishes as the Angels all-time home run leader, and Vin Scully tries to will Giants fans to give Felipe Alou an ovation.