Former Giants executive Magowan dies at 76

Peter Magowan, the former San Francisco Giants executive who thwarted a relocation attempt and championed construction of the waterfront stadium now called Oracle Park, passed away Sunday at age 76 after a long fight with cancer.

FILE PHOTO: San Francisco Giants managing general partner Peter Magowan looks over the Giants playing field prior to a news conference in San Francisco, California March 26, 2008. REUTERS/Robert Galbraith

He died at his home in the San Francisco’s Pacific Heights neighborhood, surrounded by family and friends.

“The Giants family, the entire Bay Area and the game of baseball lost a man whose passion and loyalty to his favorite team and beloved community made it possible for all of us and future generations to experience the magic of Giants baseball in San Francisco forever,” Giants president and CEO Larry Baer said in a statement.

The Magowan family also issued a statement.

“Our family lost a great man today. We all know how much Peter loved his Giants and San Francisco, and he had that same love and passion for his family. He was so proud of his children and grandchildren, and we will forever cherish the memories we made together.”

The Giants announced plans earlier this month to induct Magowan into the franchise’s Wall of Fame during a ceremony at the ballpark on Feb. 9. He will be the 53rd person and first non-player to receive a plaque on the wall.

A Giants fan growing up in New York, Magowan was the leader of an investment group that purchased the team from Bob Lurie in January 1993. Their efforts kept the Giants in San Francisco, staving off a possible move to the Tampa-St. Petersburg area.

Other highlights of his tenure as managing general partner (1993-2008) included signing Barry Bonds in 1993 and replacing the rundown Candlestick Park with a new stadium in the city’s China Basin neighborhood in 2000.

“Peter Magowan did save baseball for San Francisco,” then-commissioner of baseball Bud Selig said when Magowan stepped down in 2008. “He should get credit for that. That’s a fact. He got a beautiful ballpark built. When you look back at what he’s done in San Francisco, a town he loves, those are the two overriding things he did.”

Magowan had been ill for many years, undergoing surgeries to treat prostate and liver cancer. He had recently entered hospice care, according to the Chronicle.

In addition to his wife Debby, Magowan is survived by five children and 12 grandchildren.

—Field Level Media

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