Dave Flemming

Why Giants broadcaster Dave Flemming served as bat boy vs. Rays

NBC Universal, Inc.

SAN FRANCISCO -- Giants catcher Patrick Bailey looked confused at first, and then he broke into a wide smile.

Bailey had just walked into the dugout to begin preparing for Monday night's game and he was greeted by broadcaster Dave Flemming, who was wearing a full Giants uniform. Flemming gave him a fist bump and then grabbed a piece of gum.

Fantasy football is serious business, and for a second straight year the Giants made their league loser spend a day as a bat boy. Flemming did it under much brighter lights, though.

Austin Slater and Steven Duggar had to be the bat boys for a spring training game last year, but Flemming did it for a regular season game against the Tampa Bay Rays. He was in the dugout for the first three innings Monday and joined the NBC Sports Bay Area broadcast in the third inning.

Flemming had a smile on his face throughout but he took the job seriously, and he was tested right away. After Yandy Diaz struck out to lead off the game, Flemming hopped off the top step to take more baseballs out to home plate umpire Bill Miller.

Flemming was back out on the field every time a bat was dropped, although Austin Ginn, the main bat boy for the Giants since 2019, did offer some subtle help. When Michael Conforto got the first Giants hit, Ginn sprinted the longer distance to first base to grab Conforto's gear; Flemming went out to the left-handed batter's box to scoop up the bat.

Before taking on the assignment, Flemming met with Ginn and other members of the clubhouse staff. Ginn's advice was simple.

"Just try to stay on your feet," he said. "We've all seen those videos of guys falling or tripping. You've got to save yourself from that embarrassment."

Flemming never did anything that would have him go viral, but he did get plenty of work in. When he joined Mike Krukow and Duane Kuiper in the third inning, it was pointed out that he seemed to be working up a good sweat.

"I've gotta hustle, man. You do not want to get in the way of the game," Flemming said. "So I'm hustling. I'm going to be icing down after this."

Flemming went back to the booth after three innings to finish out the game in his normal job. Before departing, he took one last round of baseballs out to Miller. Ginn said he usually gets about five miles of walking or running in during a normal game.

"He's going to be feeling the burn later," Ginn said. "I don't think a lot of people realize it, but the pitch clock has made things a lot different. You have to move pretty fast."

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