One Tracy Junior Giants player took her family to AT&T Park in San Francisco on Sunday to see the San Francisco Giants host the Philadelphia Phillies, but the highlight of the day for them came before the Giants’ 5-2 win.
Mary Gaarde, 7, was part of the Junior Giants parade around the diamond as the Giants recognized 77 players from around California, Nevada and Oregon as this year’s Junior Giants Willie Mac Award winners.
The award, named for Hall of Fame Giants slugger and first baseman Willie McCovey, is the Junior Giants version of the award the San Francisco team gives to one player chosen by his teammates and coaches as the team’s most inspirational player. The 2013 award went to outfielder Hunter Pence.
Mary, who goes to McKinley School and is a member of the Tracy Boys & Girls Club, was selected for exemplifying the four character development traits that Junior Giants promotes — confidence, integrity, leadership and teamwork. In her second summer with the Tracy Junior Giants, she played for the Gold team under coach Steve Abercrombie.
The city of Tracy Parks and Community Services department hosts the free noncompetitive league to teach boys and girls ages 4 to 13 about the game of baseball in an environment where health, education and character are emphasized over scores.
Contact Bob Brownne at firstname.lastname@example.org or 830-4227.