It's a weird feeling to have watched baseball long enough to know a player from his first debut to his very last pitch, mostly because it also signals to me that I am indeed getting old.
Congratulations to Matt Cain for what will be after his final start this Saturday an utterly complete career: 13 seasons played resulting in three World Series championships - pitching all three clinchers in 2012, and holder of the Giants' only perfect-game in franchise's 100+ year history. I'd retire too if I've accomplish all that while banking in more than $150 million dollars.
I remember Cain's debut with the team way back in 2005. The Giants were going through it's terrible stretch of years, and Cain was the first promising pitching prospect to come through the system in a long time. Indeed he delivered on all the hype, anchoring for the subsequent decade a new and fearsome rotation that would come to include the likes of Madison Bumgarner and Tim Lincecum. The Giants revival into the glory years of the early 2010's started with Cain, and there ought to be a statue of him at AT&T Park some years down the line.
I shall be at the ballpark this Saturday to watch Cain's final tosses on a pitching mound. I'll then be able to say I was there to witness it all.