Romo's emotional final Giants game ends with Pence removing him


SAN FRANCISCO -- The chants started softly, and then got louder and louder as Giants starter Ross Stripling walked off the mound after facing one batter in the sixth inning. 

"Romo! Romo! Romo!"

An inning later, the 30,254 in attendance got their wish. 

Sergio Romo entered to "El Mechon" and a raucous standing ovation in the top of the seventh inning. The outing itself didn't at all go according to plan, but nobody will remember what actually happened with the three batters Romo faced. The Giants had planned all along for him to face three A's in the top of the seventh and then head into retirement, and they had one more surprise for one of the most popular players in franchise history. 

Hunter Pence emerged from the dugout instead of manager Gabe Kapler, which at first led to confusion. Many in the crowd grumbled because they didn't realize it was Pence, but Romo caught on quickly, laughing as he saw his former teammate and friend coming out to take the ball. Pence turned to the crowd and started pumping everyone up, and after a long hug for his former teammate, Romo walked off to his third standing ovation of the night.

It was an emotional day behind the scenes, but the Giants and Romo got what they wanted. He emerged from the dugout in the fourth inning and received a standing ovation for his entire trip out to the home bullpen, where he had never actually pitched before because it was built after he was already gone. 

Romo emerged from the center field wall before the top of the seventh and soaked in the trip back to the mound. He was greeted with a reminder that this isn't always a game that embraces the kind of personality Romo showed throughout 15 seasons in the big leagues.

Romo needed a few extra seconds to gather himself and started his warm-up throws with only 45 seconds remaining on the clock. As he got loose, home plate umpire Nic Lentz called him for a violation for taking too long to warm up. Romo walked the first batter he faced after getting called for a second violation.

A single to right and a bloop double to left kept Romo from recording an out before Kapler sent Pence to the mound. In all, Romo threw 11 pitches before walking off to a long line of hugs in the dugout. His career ended in an appropriate way. His final pitch was a slider.

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