A baseball legend was in Chico Wednesday signing autographs and checking out some motorcycles at a Harley-Davidson shop. Action News Now’s Ross Field has the story.
It’s not every day that a baseball legend visits Chico.
“I knew it was Dusty. I recognized the toothpick!”
Former Giants manager Dusty Baker is in the house, visiting Sierra Steel Harley-Davidson on Mangrove Avenue.
So, how in the world did he link up with this bike shop?
Well, Dusty, who’s from Sacramento, owns Baker Energy Team, a company specializing in solar energy and he’s here talking shop.
“Maybe we’ll get some solar on the building you know, because I’m in business now which I have been for a few years, but anytime I get a chance to come to Chico, it doesn’t have to be business, I just like coming up here,” said Baker.
“It’s fantastic! We appreciate him coming and we are very excited about him being here today,” added Stephen Adams III, president of Sierra Steel Harley-Davidson.
Dusty managed the Giants to the 2002 World Series, a series that delivered a memory forever etched in the minds of San Francisco Giants fans. Remember when J.T. Snow saved Dusty’s three-year-old son Darren Baker, a batboy who prematurely ran onto the field?
So, where’s Darren now?
“Darren is a freshman at University of California-Berekley and he’s on scholarship, made the baseball team and we’re looking forward to him coming home for the Holidays,” said Baker.
Dusty has also managed the Cubs, Reds, and most recently the Nationals, having led each team to the playoffs.
As a player, he spent nineteen seasons in the Bigs and won a World Series with the Dodgers in 1981, but don’t bring that up to the fans at this signing session!
“Whenever I think of Dusty, I never think about the days of the Dodgers, I always think about the days of him and the Giants. In fact, I don’t really like to think about anyone with the Dodgers,” said Steve Barbo.
“I remember coming into this game as an eighteen year-old out of high school. It’s been great! I mean how many people get to do something they love for almost 50 years,” said Baker.
Dusty spent one hour meeting and greeting fans, signing autographs and posing for pictures.
“He’s a really really nice guy, genuinely cool guy,” said Tracy Barbo.
As far as the future is concerned, Dusty says he’s not hanging up the towel (or toothpick) quite yet, but Baker Energy Team seems to be his top priority at the moment.
“I got a few things I’d like to do, including business, but wherever God wants me to go, that’s where I’ll go,” said Baker.
On Wednesday, that was Chico.