SAN FRANCISCO — Tim Flannery is ready to leave the baseball grind and play a little more music.
On the day Pablo Sandoval finalized his contract with the Boston Red Sox, Flannery announced he is retiring from the San Francisco Giants, who lost their third-base coach in addition to their third baseman.
”The grueling grind, the schedule, the demands have taken a toll, and I feel it is the time to step off the highway and heal. This baseball life is a blessing, but collateral damage comes with it,” Flannery wrote, noting he looks forward to increased family time.
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Flannery wrote on his band’s Facebook page, Tim Flannery and Lunatic Fringe, that he spoke with general manager Brian Sabean and manager Bruce Bochy on Tuesday and they ”shared some tears together.”
Flannery was an animated coach who danced along the baseline and emphatically twirled his arm to send runners
”With a heavy heart I want to say something. I left everything nine years ago to chase a dream,” Flannery said. ”I left my home, my family, to follow my leader, and friend Bruce Bochy, to fight another battle, to try and bring a world championship to San Francisco.”
Flannery noted, ”I have no dreams of managing.”
The 57-year-old Flannery had been on Bochy’s coaching staff dating to their San Diego days, and they moved to San Francisco together in 2007.
”After 30 years of playing and coaching with Flan, I certainly am going to miss him,” Bochy said. ”We’ve gone down a lot of roads together. I’m sure he’s making the right decision for himself and his family. I know he influenced and impacted a lot of players with his knowledge and enthusiasm. I’m grateful for his contribution and friendship. I wish him all the best.”
As a player over parts of 11 seasons with the Padres during which he and Bochy were teammates, Flannery was a career .255 hitter with nine homers and 209 RBI in 972 games.
In late January, Flannery presented the family of Bryan Stow with $96,000 to help with the care of the Giants fan as the father of two continues to deal with traumatic injuries and brain damage. Flannery and his band held four sold-out Northern California concerts last offseason benefiting Stow. All dollars from purchases of Flannery’s 11th album, ”Outside Lands,” released in November 2013, go directly to Stow.
”It is with a heavy heart that we bid farewell to Tim,” the Giants said in a statement. ”We are grateful for his many contributions to the Giants organization over the last eight seasons. He’s been a loyal and vital leader of the San Francisco Giants, but more importantly, he has been a friend and mentor to many of us who share his passion for the Giants and the community, with his special dedication to Bryan Stow. We wish Tim nothing but the best on his future endeavors and hope to see him out at AT&T Park again soon.”
Flannery joined Phil Lesh and Bob Weir of the Grateful Dead to sing ”The Star-Spangled Banner” before Game 3 of the NL Championship Series last month at AT&T Park.
He said he will continue to commit himself to causes he believes in and to build awareness.
”History will show I was part of the greatest baseball teams in Giant history, I also was part of the greatest baseball teams in San Diego Padres history,” Flannery said. ”I feel like the game has honored a humble servant of it, I have been blessed so much from this sacred game. I just now feel it is the time to send myself home safely.”