Leading Off

Rain or shine, it’s time for baseball

San Francisco Giants pitcher Madison Bumgarner holds up the trophy after their win in Game 7 of baseball’s World Series against the Kansas City Royals Wednesday, Oct. 29, 2014, in Kansas City, Mo.
San Francisco Giants pitcher Madison Bumgarner holds up the trophy after their win in Game 7 of baseball’s World Series against the Kansas City Royals Wednesday, Oct. 29, 2014, in Kansas City, Mo. AP

With one of the best and most drama-filled Super Bowls behind us, baseball is just around the corner.

Northern California baseball fans can get their first tastes of the Giants and A’s this weekend during the teams’ annual fanfests, even though the expected rain could put a damper on the enthusiasm.

The defending world champion Giants get things started Saturday at 10 a.m. at AT&T Park. The event is free – parking is $10 – and fans are encouraged to arrive early because of the expected large crowd and long lines, especially for autographs.

Madison Bumgarner, Buster Posey, Joe Panik, Brandon Crawford, Matt Cain, Tim Hudson and Bruce Bochy are among those expected to make appearances.

Some of the features include a self-guided tour of the visitors’ clubhouse, live interviews on the main stage and autograph booths.

The A’s join the fun Sunday at 10 a.m. at both O.co Coliseum and the adjacent Oracle Arena. Admission is $10 (children 6 and under are free) and tickets must be purchased online in advance, but parking is free.

Players expected to attend include Billy Butler, Coco Crisp, A.J. Griffin, Josh Reddick and Stephen Vogt, along with manager Bob Melvin.

In addition to autograph and Q&A sessions, fans can tour the clubhouses and check out team memorabilia.

Though teams offer plenty for fans to do, the main reason they host fanfests is to sell tickets (merchandise and concessions, too, of course). If you’re interested in buying tickets, these events give you an opportunity to check out the seats first-hand.

– Tom Couzens

tcouzens@sacbee.com


What to do

NBA, Dallas at Kings,

7 p.m., Sleep Train Arena: Will the Mavericks be tired after playing the Warriors in Oakland on Wednesday?


What to watch

NBA, L.A. Clippers at Cleveland, 5 p.m., TNT: With LeBron James healthy, the Cavaliers have won 11 in a row – after losing six in a row.


On this date

2006: The Pittsburgh Steelers win a record-tying fifth Super Bowl, but just their first since 1980, with a 21-10 win over the Seattle Seahawks.

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