Coming soon to a Giants' ballpark near you are 1) San Francisco's first World Series trophy for display, and 2) Showtime television cameras for a reality series.
Pause here for dramatic effect. (Sigh.)
The Giants are creating a mass-exposure phenomenon.
Yes, they should proudly show off their long-sought prize, taking it on a victory tour throughout the West Coast, as well as to their native soil in New York.
Such exhibitionism is encouraged, as opposed to the kind that may emerge in Showtime's just-announced series on the 2011 Giants.
A trophy is real, has staying power and creates goodwill. A TV show, not so much. Make the trophy visible, not the clubhouse.
Who knows what will transpire with Showtime being "embedded" with the team all season. But last year's team won it all without that reality-TV element.
Aubrey Huff's red thong and Brian Wilson's black beard can't carry every show this summer. Manager Bruce Bochy won't cuss to your cable bill's delight (see: Rex Ryan, HBO's "Hard Knocks.") And yet "...
"It became clear the Giants had the right selection of players and personalities, and later when they won the World Series, it was a compelling choice," Showtime entertainment president David Nevins said in a Reuters report.
The soon-to-be-titled series is already in production. A preview episode is slated in late March, with regular episodes picking up in the summer.
While it might be must-see TV, it won't replace the genuine admiration of what the 2010 Giants produced: baseball's ring-of-flags hardware. Let's focus on that, instead of a reality-TV machine, if you will.
Two months into captivity, the Commissioner's Trophy already ranks among San Francisco's most photographed landmarks. A suggestion: Keep that trophy on public display as much as possible. Don't bottle it in a glass case on the "can-I-see-your-ticket" club level at AT&T Park.
All fans should have access to it daily, like a cable car ride, only cheaper. Championship trophies are a rare commodity, and rarely do the Bay Area's other franchises strut out theirs for photo-ops.
If the past decade at Third and King has taught us anything, the Giants will celebrate this right. They know how to honor their past, arguably like no other franchise.
Their current plan puts the trophy on display -- somewhere inside AT&T Park -- throughout the Giants' first home weekend, April 8-10 against the St. Louis Cardinals.
After that, the trophy is staying at the ballpark, but likely on the secured club level, similar to how the Philadelphia Phillies stash their 1980 and 2008 crowns. If so, the Giants still plan to free the trophy for cameos in the promenade and view sections during this season.
Ideally, the Giants should make the trophy as visible as any of the five statues surrounding their waterfront gem. At NFL stadiums such as those in Kansas City and Pittsburgh, Lombardi Trophies are on display on the concourse level, and fans flock to them with glee.
From a jam-packed parade to "The Tonight Show" set, the Giants' trophy has drawn appropriate fame. Now it is visiting "Giants country," as Giants managing partner Bill Neukom described the trophy's tour through over 30 locales. Over 4,000 fans welcomed it to the state Capitol.
No, the tour isn't stopping in Oakland, but it will hit the East Bay strongholds of Walnut Creek (Jan. 31) and Pleasanton (Feb. 2). Yes, San Jose is part of this tour's territory (Feb. 1).
The Giants' long wait for a trophy is one reason for its popularity. But here's another: Bay Area fans rarely get to see championship hardware.
The 49ers keep their five Lombardi Trophies in a glass case inside their Santa Clara facility's lobby. The Raiders do not display their three Lombardi Trophies, except on special occasions (see: Randy Moss' signing, team banquets, media-guide covers).
As for the A's, they've won four World Series titles in their Oakland era, and they're housed in the reception area of their executive offices inside Oracle Arena. The trophies are brought out for events such as the Fan Appreciation Tailgate on March 29.
As for the Warriors' 1975 NBA trophy, this is worthy of a TV series. As legend has it, then-owner Franklin Mieuli drove that Walter A. Brown Trophy around in his convertible while gallivanting about town, only to have the trophy stolen. The Warriors' next owner, Jim Fitzgerald, apparently made a replica of the modern-day Larry O'Brien Trophy and presented it to the Mieuli family.
The Giants should keep showing off their prize with the joy Mieuli did his. But that won't be the task of the Giants coaches and players. They'll be busy defending that trophy among distracting television cameras.
Contact Cam Inman at firstname.lastname@example.org.