SAN DIEGO -- Before his final Opening Day game, Bruce Bochy was the most popular man on the field. He shook one hand after another before and after batting practice as a constant stream of old friends and some former players stopped by to chat and wish him well.
At some point, Bochy started inching towards the steps of the dugout.
"I have to prepare for the game," Bochy said a few times, finally getting away on what was not close to the first attempt.
It was all business for Bochy, and he didn't show any excess emotion before a final season-opener that happened to come in the city where he spent so many years managing.
"I really haven't thought about it, to be honest," he said Thursday morning. "It's been a busy week, it has. There were a lot of moves, transactions, and just doing a lot of homework and trying to get the team ready. I haven't really thought about it but maybe when the ceremonies happen right before the game, I'll probably do some reflecting.
"It did start here, not this park, but this city, back in 1995. I just haven't had time to reflect at all on it, but I'm sure at some point I will."
The Giants have two more trips here, both in July, and perhaps there will be more emotion before that final game in San Diego on July 28. If the Padres have anything special planned for their former manager, they're saving the surprise. There was nothing out of the ordinary Thursday, no sign of wine bottles or golf clubs being delivered to the manager's office.
There was one part of the day, though, that Bochy thought would stand out. Asked about the importance of the final Opening Day, he brought up his longtime ace, Madison Bumgarner.
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"Even seeing Bumgarner out there, Opening Day in my last year, I'll do some reflecting there on what this man has done for us and for me," Bochy said. "But those are good things, and that's what I said I was going to do, and I want the players to remind themselves to savor what we do.
"It's coming to an end, so I'm going to savor every bit of this year."