SF Giants welcome back longtime skipper in advisory role

Houston Astros Press Conference
Houston Astros Press Conference / Bob Levey/GettyImages
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The SF Giants are welcoming back longtime manager Dusty Baker into the organization. Bob Nightengale of USA Today reports that the baseball lifer will serve as a special assistant to Farhan Zaidi and will assist Larry Baer on the ownership side.

SF Giants welcome back longtime skipper in advisory role

Of course, Baker hinted that his return to the organization was imminent. The Giants have not yet announced the move, but Baker insinuated that he would like to work in some capacity with the Sacramento River Cats, which is near his home in Granite Bay.

This could very well be the final stop for Baker, who announced his retirement from managing earlier in the offseason. Incredibly, his playing career began in 1967 and he debuted with the Atalnta Braves in the following season as a 19-year-old outfielder. His 19-year playing career included stops with the Braves, Los Angeles Dodgers, Giants, and Oakland A's.

He briefly stepped away from baseball after hanging up his cleats in 1986, but baseball pulled him right back. He was hired as the Giants' first base coach in 1988 and became the hitting coach shortly thereafter before being elevated to manager following the 1992 season.

This began a long and historic career that will eventually land him in the Hall of Fame. The 74-year-old served as the Giants' manager for 11 seasons before making stops with the Chicago Cubs (2003 - 2006), Cincinnati Reds (2008 - 2013), Washington Nationals (2016 - 2017), and finally the Houston Astros (2000 - 2023).

His tenure with San Francisco ended on a sour note as it came on the heels of a disappointing World Series loss to the Los Angeles Angels in 2002. Baker's relationship with San Francisco has been repaired over the years as this will be his second stint as a special advisor. His experience and ability to connect with players were just some of the factors that helped him continue landing managerial gigs. When a team wanted to win, they called Baker.

Incredibly, Baker led his teams to the playoffs in 13 out of his 26 seasons in the dugout. This included a long-awaited World Series victory with the Astros in 2022. His 2,183 career wins as a manager rank seventh all-time in baseball history.

The six managers in front of him on that list are among the best managers in sports history. Baker is in that same echelon. Regardless of his role, the Giants will benefit from having him back in the organization.