Giants' owner ready to walk away

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SAN FRANCISCO --- Peter Magowan recently made his rounds through the dugout and several fans stopped him to offer their best wishes and thanks for what he's done during nearly two decades running the San Francisco Giants.

On Wednesday, Magowan will walk away from his role as primary owner and managing partner of the franchise after 16 years. He will head into a retirement filled with fishing trips, travel and time with his grandchildren. He already has a vacation to Italy planned for one of his first getaways.

"I'm ready. The difficult part was making the decision in the first place," Magowan said. "But once I made it, I don't look back, and that's typical of me. When I make a decision, whether it's the right one or the wrong one, that's it and move on to the next decision. I'm comfortable. I wish we could have had a better year this year than we did. I really felt we'd be an improvement over last year's team."

The losing aside, Magowan's legacy surely will be as the man who kept Major League Baseball in San Francisco, brought home run king Barry Bonds to town and ultimately also let him go, and the one who built a new ballpark. Not to mention his work keeping Hall of Famers such as Willie Mays, Willie McCovey and Orlando Cepeda around in advisory roles.

The 66-year-old Magowan is proud of those efforts. They all have been celebrated this year during the club's 50th anniversary of its move from New York.

"You look at this ballpark and it's certainly going to be a big part of Peter's legacy," Giants manager Bruce Bochy said. "And the fact the Giants are here, because they were close to leaving San Francisco. Peter will always be instrumental in keeping the Giants here. And all the ex-Giants who come back here -- (J.T.) Snow, (Shawon) Dunston and the ceremony for Orlando Cepeda -- a lot of that is Peter Magowan. Once you're a Giant, you're always a Giant.

"He really takes a lot of pride in the history of the San Francisco Giants. He has done a great job of building the tremendous tradition they have here."

There have been plenty of ups and downs during Magowan's tenure and his decisions haven't always been popular. But he's stuck to what he believes and communicated openly with fans, receiving feedback and criticism.

"I've always had the philosophy that a ballpark belongs to the community, not to the owner or set of owners. I think the community wants the team to be run in a way that if they were in charge, how would they want it to be run?" Magowan said.

That strong community image likely helped the Giants weather the steroids controversy that surrounded Bonds.

"I would hope when people look back on what Peter's done for San Francisco, they look back on a positive note at what he's accomplished," pitcher Noah Lowry said.


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