SAN FRANCISCO -- The celebratory parade through Market Street and the ceremony that followed on the steps of City Hall allowed the Giants to spend one final day together before heading their separate ways into the offseason.
Wednesday's celebration was the culmination of a whirlwind of events since the team capped off a four-game sweep of the Detroit Tigers in the World Series on Sunday. The Giants were bussed to AT&T Park at the conclusion of Wednesday's festivities, where the Giants said their final goodbyes to one another as 2012 Giants teammates. The last of the lockers were cleared out in the clubhouse, with several players choosing to empty their lockers on Tuesday.
"Just being back here in the ballpark, I just want to be here with these guys forever," said Gregor Blanco, as he packed away his bats. "It just seems like yesterday that it was Spring Training and I was just meeting these guys. And now we're leaving, and that's crazy."
"We're ending on a pretty good note," Brandon Crawford said. "This is about as good of a way as you can."
The Giants rattled off consecutive come-from-behind series wins to get to the World Series, rallying under a "See you tomorrow" motto. Their spirited, improbable run through the postseason was extended long enough to give the Giants their second World Series championship in three years. And on Wednesday, the "See you tomorrow" mantra was exchanged for "See you at Spring Training" in four months, and possibly even longer for the team's many free agents.
"It's tough, just because we've said it before how much we mean to each other and how much we enjoy playing baseball with each other," Brandon Belt said. "It was a special time with these guys, something I've never experienced before. But at the same time, now we'll be able to get some rest and hopefully be back at it again next year."
"It's hard to just leave everything just with the way that we finished it," Blanco said. "It's sad to see all the guys leaving, and knowing that I probably won't see a lot of them for a while."
As they exchanged goodbyes and snapped final pictures with one another, many Giants took the time to wish Crawford and his wife Jalynne their best wishes, as the couple expect their first child in December.
"Just being out there in the parade, it really sunk in that we won and that we did it, and I'm sure it will more in the next month or so," Crawford said. "But then I've got a kid on the way, so I'll forget about it for a little [while]."
Jay Lee is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.