Royals’ Ned Yost Grew Up A Giants Fan, Once Spent Vida Blue Autograph

Ned YostClearly, this World Series is going to be an inside job.

OK, maybe not. But Kansas City Royals manager Ned Yost revealed Monday that he grew up a huge San Francisco Giants fan, making this year’s Fall Classic extra special for the veteran skipper.

“I bet you I’ve wore out 15 San Francisco Giant hats as a kid growing up,” Yost told reporters in Kansas City. “That was my team. I loved to watch them. Willie Mays was my idol and favorite player at that time.. Just was a huge Giants fan.

“By the time I was a junior and senior in high school, the Oakland A’s were winning their championships, but at heart I was always a Giants fan.”

Yost isn’t going to do his childhood team any favors in the coming days. The Royals enter the World Series with a perfect 8-0 record this postseason, but the Giants, who are 8-2, have experience on their side. San Francisco is seeking its third title in five years.

Yost’s memories of rooting for the Giants back in the day aren’t going anywhere anytime soon, though. He fondly recalls chasing down Vida Blue for an autograph one day after sneaking into what was then known as Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum. (Yost apparently used to hop the fence and hide in the bathroom until batting practice started.)

“I ran down to get his autograph, but I didn’t have anything for him to sign,” Yost recalled. “The only thing I had was a dollar bill. So I asked Vida if he’d sign it for me, and he signed ‘Vida Blue’ on the dollar bill.

“And I was the happiest guy in the stadium until about the sixth inning, and I got hungry and I spent it on a Colossal Dog,” Yost continued, adding an interesting twist to the story. “I don’t know if you remember Colossal Dogs. When they came out, they were big hot dogs and big buns and sauerkraut. And they were about a buck. So I spent my Vida Blue autograph on a Colossal Dog.”

Yost eventually received a new Blue autograph about 20 years later while doing a baseball clinic with the six-time All-Star. The stories are what matter, though, and Yost certainly is full of them.

Photo via Christopher Hanewinckel/USA TODAY Sports Images

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