My Family of Gregs

Since I’m new not only to blogging but to the Giants, I’ll start off with a little background.

I grew up in Venezuela. I have a twin brother (not identical) whose name is Gregory. And I have a younger brother whose name is Gregsman. So Gregor, Gregory and Gregsman. Why? I still don’t know. My mom said she just liked the names. She even named our house “The Gregs’’ and put up a sign.

My twin brother and I have carried on the tradition more or less. My six-year-old son is named Grenyer, and my 18-month-old son is named Gregor Alejandro. Gregory’s son is named Greyver.

Growing up, my twin and I were always together playing baseball. Nobody ever seemed to call us by our names. It was, “Hey, Twins, what’s up?’’

Gregory played in the Angels and Pirates minor leagues as a catcher but left after a few years to become a phys ed teacher. Gregsman works as a jobs recruiter for the government.

My dad, Hernan, sold insurance for a while and now owns and runs a taxi company. My mother died of brain cancer six years ago when she was 47 years old. I still think about her every day.

I’m married to my childhood sweetheart, Zulay. We’ve known each other since we were 12.

I never wanted to do anything but play baseball. I signed with the Braves at the age of 16 and made my major-league debut eight years later, in 2008. I stayed in the majors most of that season and parts of the next two.

I was traded to Kansas City in the summer of 2010. Between the Braves and the Royals that year, I hit. 283  — my best season ever.

Then it all fell apart. I didn’t spend a single day in the major leagues in 2011. Kansas City started me in Triple A then traded me to the Washington Nationals, who also put me in Triple A. I developed bone spurs in my wrist halfway through the season and had to stop playing. It was the worst year of my career.

The Nationals released me in November.

I didn’t know what would happen. The Giants soon contacted me – one of their scouts had seen me in Triple A before my bone spurs and had sent a good report back to the Giants’ front office. The Marlins were also interested.

By this time I was already home in Venezuela, playing for my usual winter-ball team, Tiburones de la Guaira. (Tiburones means sharks, so that’s where my nickname “White Shark’’ comes from.) Giants batting coach Hensley Meulens was coaching in the same league. Between him and Pablo Sandoval, they convinced me I should sign with the Giants.

What I really appreciated at spring training was the open competition. If I performed, I’d make the team. And I did.

I know we’re struggling now, but this is a team that fights to win every day. That’s what I really like about being here.

It’s tough without Pablo in the lineup, I’ll be honest. He’s so important. I’ve known him a long time. He’s a few years younger than me, so I watched him come up through the ranks in Venezuela. There’s no one else like him. At least he’s still in the clubhouse and in the dugout to keep us loose and laughing.

I usually hang out on the road with him and Hector Sanchez, another countryman. But yesterday, on our day off in Arizona, they went to Glendale to get tattoos, so I was on my own. I went shopping for a Mother’s Day gift for my wife, watched “The Avengers’’ then played some video games.

Let me know what you want to read in this blog. I really want to hear from you.

21 Comments

My name is Steven Post. My wife, Rebecca, of 36 years, is a huge baseball fan. We live in Visalia about a four hour trip SE from you. In the past few years she has become a Giants fan. We have been to a few games. Up until this year I have not rooted for any team whether it be baseball, football, etc. However, I believe I have become a Giants fan. Your blog is very uplifting. I can see that not only are you a baseball player, but a husband and father. The latter vocations are vital. You strike me as someone who puts family first and their profession second. Keep up the good work. Any man can be a “father” it takes a real man to be a DAD. Happy DAD’s day. Blessings. Steven E. C. Post

I’ve been following the Giants for about 40 years an I gotta say that was one of the finest catches I’ve ever seen anyone make. It wasn’t just the catch itself, it was all the drama leading up to it. If you hadn’t made that catch, it would have been one gigantic ( no pun intended ) let down. Matt Cain deserved that perfect game. And you and all your teammates made sure he got it. Great catch Gregor. I’ve been pulling for you to make the team since i first seen you play. My whole families Giants fans. We are all very proud of all you guys. Go Gigantes.

Thanks for the great blog and your background story! Welcome to SF! I LOVE watching you play–I had a great feeling about you during Spring Training and was hoping you’d get the chance to start every game. I love your speed and intensity during games—you clearly want to play regularly and winning helps!!! I also admire your patience at the plate…something we have problems with sometimes. All the best to you and I hope you are here a LONG TIME!!

You are a true game changer and I’m glad Bochy has figured that out. Love watching you play! Best of luck!

Great story! I can imagine being a kid in your family…”Greg did it!”, and everybody pointing at everybody else. : )

So glad you’re part of the SF Giants. Thanks for sharing your story. All things happen for a reason and I’m sure your injury only will make you a stronger person.

Would love to know how you prepare for each day not knowing if you’re playing or not? How to keep yourself ready?

Take care — go Giants!!

Love the story Gregor! Hope you’ve been treated well in SF, I certainly think you’re a blast to watch and a great player. My question is: what has been the fan response with the Giants? Do you like playing for SF so far? Hope to see you on the field more often!

Hi Gregor. It will be nice for all of us Giants fans to get to know you better through this blog. I was wondering, which stadiums do you love/hate to play outfield in and why? Also, do the do the different sizes and shapes of the outfield make your job harder and how do you adjust to the size differences and how the outfields play? From what we’ve seen of you so far you are awesome and we’re glad to have you. Go White Shark and Go Giants!

Take it from this Greg, we love having you on the team! Hope you are with the team for a long long time tiburon blanco!

Nice to meet you, Gregor! I really enjoy watching you play and can’t wait to see more.Go Giants!

Gregor! Hello! Really happy you made the team out of spring training. We need speed. As for to blog what you wrote was cool to know. Who knows what mothers think when they name children :-). As for what fans like to read in blogs, I like to read about what you guys think of the trials and tribulations of the season. On a movie note, I saw the Avengers last night also!!! It was so cool!! My husband and I loved it!!

Saludos Gregor, gracias por compartir esa historia y te deseo lo mejor esta temporada y que establezcas tu carrera con los Giants.
Suerte y Tiburones Pa Encimaaa.
And lets go Giants…

Thanks for sharing! It’s wonderful to have you with the Giants. They seem like a great group of guys. Keep up the good work and good luck this year!

Gregor, you are a terrific addition to the Giants. You seem to bring skills and humor to the team-keep it coming! I would love to know what it’s like for you to join a team with amazing baseball history, and be surrounded by current and future Hall of Fame players. Good luck & keep smiling!

Well, I’m glad you joined the Giants instead of the Marlins – they are enough trouble without your help! [wait, don’t sharks eat marlins??] I follow spring training and loved the Venezuela power (MVP!) trio of yourself, Hector and of course, our beloved Pablo, and wasn’t surprised at all to see you’d made the roster at the end. VERY glad you’re a Giant – thank you for the post, and best wishes for a triumphant return to MLB, as well as health and happiness to your family of Gregs and Zulay (which is a really lovely name, I have to add!)

Thank you for helping us get to know you, Gregor! Were you always an outfielder? With you speed/agility, I could see you performing as a shortstop as well. Also, being one of the new guys on the team, do you see the team comraderie aspect that the Giants clubhouse has been known for in recent years?
Thanks again and I’ll look forward to seeing you in Philly from July 20-22!(:

Thanks for sharing your story, Gregor. I almost teared while reading your blog. Us Giants fans will support you and the team. Let’s Go Giants.

I would just like to say that you’re absolutely amazing and we’re so glad to have you on the team. GO GIANTS!
Also, that’s one of the sweetest blog posts I’ve ever read.

Awesome story Gregor, thank you for sharing. We are so happy to have you in SF, you are a great player and a great addition to the roster. I wish you all the best, this year and in the future. Go Giants!

Thanks so much for letting us know about your background, SF loves you already. By the way the running single or as I call it the “drag single” you did the other day was insane. You are a blast to watch. Hope you get to play more often. Go Giants!

Awesome story Gregor, thank you for sharing it. We are so happy to have you in SF, you are a great player. I wish you all the best, this year and in the future. Go Giants!

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