SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. — Pablo Sandoval rarely filled notebook pages in his seven seasons with the Giants, but three weeks into his career in Boston, Sandoval has decided to make some waves. In an interview with Scott Miller of Bleacher Report, Sandoval said leaving San Francisco wasn’t a difficult decision and it's one he made long before he helped the Giants win a third World Series title in five years.
Sandoval’s most pointed comments came when asked about his teammates. The third baseman said he doesn’t miss the Giants clubhouse, considered one of the best in the sport.
"Only Bochy," Sandoval told Miller. "I love Boch. He's like my dad. He's the only guy that I miss. And Hunter Pence. Just those guys. But now, I feel like I'm home.”
Sandoval’s comments were met by eye rolls by those in the Giants clubhouse who had seen them early Monday. Sandoval has moved on and the Giants have, too. Their longtime third baseman doesn’t come up in interviews or conversation unless a reporter brings him up first, and several Giants have pointed out that Casey McGehee is a “great fit.”
Sandoval signed a five-year, $95 million deal with the Red Sox in November, spurning an offer from the Giants, who expressed a willingness to pay him $100 million over the same timeframe.
In the interview with Miller, Sandoval said leaving San Francisco was “not hard at all.”
“If you want me around, you make the effort to push and get me back,” he said. "I knew early in spring training last year I was going to leave. They didn't respect my agent. Contract talks, everything. The way Brian Sabean talked to my agent.”
Sandoval’s distaste with the organization goes back to last spring when he asked for a five-year extension. The Giants countered with a four-year deal for around $75 million, with a vesting option that would have turned it into a five-year deal worth approximately $85 million.
Sandoval told Miller his decision in November wasn’t about money. "It is about how you treat the player.” He apparently is pleased with the push Boston made, and said he never seriously considered the San Diego Padres, the third team offering big money last offseason.
"I wanted to get out of the NL West," Sandoval said. "If I had gone to San Diego, it would have been crazy when we played San Francisco."
Instead, Sandoval will only see his former teammates this season if they meet up in the World Series. His performance last October was a big part of the appeal for the Red Sox, and it helped the Giants parade down Market Street for a third time.
After that parade, Sandoval said he hoped to stay in San Francisco,
“I love being here, I love being here,” he told reporters at City Hall. “I love the way they keep all their guys together ... I want to be here for the rest of my career. I want to wear that jersey for the rest of my career.”
His words an hour earlier turned out to be more truthful. According to people who were near him on the parade route, as Sandoval was waving to cheering fans that day, he turned and told family members that he was waving goodbye.