“Why are Dodgers girls the best girls to date?” Jerry Stever asks with a straight face. “Because they don’t expect a ring.”
A Reno resident since 2001, Stever is the ultimate Giants fan. He still returns to San Francisco several times a year to watch his beloved team. He was there for the opening series this year and also will be there for the closing series. In between, he’ll take a trip back East to watch the Giants play in Boston and New York.
Stever was in fine form Tuesday when Tim Lincecum pitched for the Salt Lake Bees against the hometown Reno Aces. The Bees are the Triple-A affiliate for the Los Angeles Angels, which signed Lincecum after the Giants parted ways with the two-time Cy Young Award winner following last season.
Perched at the rail above Section 107 before the game, Stever would stop Giants fans walking by and offer a few words of wisdom. He probably stopped a few Dodger fanatics, as well.
“What’s the difference between a Dodgers dog and a Giants dog?” Stever had the answer: “They don’t sell Dodgers dogs at the World Series.” He admits being merciless toward Dogers fans, but it’s all in good fun.
“Did you hear the Dodger word of the year? It’s nacho — as in not-yo year.”
His ride? An orange Escalade — complete with Giants logos — painted by Elite Custom Body & Paint in Sparks. The interior is decked out in orange and black leather, of course.
A former FAA air traffic controller in Fremont, Stever has been a Giants fan for as long as he can remember. He attended his first game at Seals Stadium after the team headed to San Francisco from New York in 1958. Thoughts of Candlestick Park still give him the chills.
“The coldest months of my life were spent in Candlestick in July,” he said.
On Tuesday, he was accompanied by his buddy James Walker, who once sold sports memorabilia at All-American Sports Fan in Reno.
“I was his best customer,” Stever said. “(Walker) used to call me when new Giants stuff came in and I’d go down and buy it.” He had a still-boxed Tim Lincecum bobblehead (holding a World Series trophy) that he hoped to have signed, and has a collection of more than 400 Giants items.
Stever still frets about one momento that slipped away. When he went off to Vietnam to serve his county, his sister sold a cherished baseball at a garage sale. It had been signed by Willie Mays, Orlando Cepeda and Willie McCovey. “I never forgave her for that,” he said, still managing to smile about it.
Although Lincecum ended up on a Los Angeles team (at least it wasn’t the dreaded Dodgers, he said), Stever isn’t bitter. He hopes to see him play another four or five years during an eventual march to the Hall of Fame.
“He’s like Rice-A-Roni — he’s a San Francisco treat. Everyone loves Timmy.”
Related story: Timmy wants one more start with Bees before joining Angels. LINK