Monday, October 27, 2014
World Series 2014: Elk Hunter vs. Elk Hunter
The 2014 World Series features an intriguing yet contrasting matchup between the Kansas City Royals and San Francisco Giants.
The media has already labeled it "Destiny versus Dynasty." The Royals are competing in baseball's Fall Classic for the first time in 29 years while the Giants are seeking their third world championship in the last five years.
The managerial matchup, though, is a straight-up draw: elk hunter versus elk hunter.
"I know both of these guys and one thing they share is a passion for elk and the outdoors," said David Allen, Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation president and CEO. "There's only one place where Bruce Bochy and Ned Yost would rather be right now other than out in the backcountry chasing elk and that's in the dugout trying to out-manage each other and win the World Series."
The similarities don't stop there. Both Yost and Bochy are former big league catchers with strikingly similar career averages. Bochy batted .239 with 26 home runs and 93 runs batted in over nine years while Yost batted .212 with 16 home runs and batted in 64 runs over a six-year playing career. They both played for three different teams. They are both in the midst of managerial stints with their second ball clubs and are also both 59 years old.
Bochy managed the Giants to championships in 2010 and 2012. Immediately prior to the 2014 Spring Training schedule, he shared the same microphone with Allen in a suburban Phoenix baseball stadium at a roast as part of an RMEF gathering.
"My passion is hunting. A former teammate of mine, Goose Gossage, had a ranch in Colorado. We used it as therapy for after the season," said Bochy. "In my office in San Francisco, I'm the only manager with an elk head hanging in his office."
Yost, who has a World Series ring as Atlanta's bullpen coach in 1995, is also well-known around baseball circles as an avid hunter. He also briefly enjoyed a second career as a taxidermist between his playing and coaching careers.
"Ned was a long-time friend and hunting partner of my friend Dale (Earnhardt) Sr. for many years," said Allen. "They spent a great deal of time in the woods together."
When the World Series ends, chances are the two will swap a hunting story before returning to the woods in search of a different kind of trophy.
"Both of these men are fine gentlemen, outdoorsmen and sportsmen. And we are especially grateful they are both supporters of the RMEF," added Allen.