A Giants fan for the past 72 years, Manny Auerbacher, 79, traveled from Teaneck to Texas then right back again after seeing his beloved Giants win its first World Series in 56 years.  He may have been the only one in Arlington Stadium who rooted for the team back when they played in New York’s Polo Grounds and maybe he brought them a little luck from glory days past.

For the Teaneck, NJ resident, becoming a Giants fan was part of becoming an American as he arrived as an eight-year-old immigrant from Germany in 1939 and quickly took to the “national pastime.”  He passed on his passion to son Elliot who joined his father for what would be most memorable sports experience of both their lives.

That trip started with a stop at the Giant’s hotel where they ran into and took pictures with Giant’s ace pitcher Tim Lincecum along with manager Bruce Bochy, pitching coach Dave Righetti, outfielder Cody Ross, shortstop Juan Uribe, centerfielder Andres Torres. When the assembled Giants learned Manny was at the Polo Grounds for Willie Mays’ first big league hit, a homer off Warren Spahn, they happily took pictures with him, like he was a lucky charm, a link to the franchise’s storied past and perhaps a portent of championship glory to come.

The charmed trip included a ticket upgrade courtesy of Arlington Stadium, a TV interview of the near octogenarian Giants fan by a California TV station and the celebration of a long-awaited World Series win as Giants fandom’s elder statesman.

“I can’t explain the feeling as we made our way down to the Giants dugout to celebrate with the other 2,000 or so Giants fans in the stadium,” son Elliot Auerbacher said.  “We met so many Giants fans and many of them wanted their picture taken with my dad because he is a Polo Grounds Giants fan and probably the only one at the stadium that night.”

By midnight father and son were back in the hotel for a brief rest before heading to DFW Airport by 5 AM for the flight home and the end to the best 16 hours in one longtime sports fan’s life

photos

  • Tim Lincecum with Manny Auerbacher
  • Elliott & Manny Auerbacher at Arlington Stadium
  • Tim Lincecum with Manny Auerbacher
  • Elliott & Manny Auerbacher at Arlington Stadium

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