There is no doubt that SF State students will be cheering on the San Francisco Giants in their first game against the Detroit Tigers tonight, but President Leslie E. Wong is stuck between Michigan ties and Bay Area roots.
“I’m rooting for both teams,” Wong said.
During his time as president at Northern Michigan University, Wong developed a relationship with former Tigers broadcaster Ernie Hardwell, and attended games with the chance to see right-handed pitcher Justin Verlander work his magic.
“I got to see Verlander pitch for the Tigers, and I have to tell you that’s a Sandy Koufax if I have seen someone actually get faster each inning,” Wong said. “He starts a game pitching at 93 or 94 mph with a wicked slider. Here I am watching him in the eighth inning; I saw him throw pitches at 104 mph in the eighth inning. I mean, it is just unheard of.”
Although Wong is impressed with Verlander’s abilities, the offensive game the Giants bring to the plate will be one to compete with.
“It will be interesting. The Giants might have the bats that will be the counter to the pitching,” Wong said.
The Giants and Tigers will face off in game one at AT&T Park tonight at 5:07 p.m.