WESTCHESTER COUNTY, N.Y. -- A Yonkers native who played baseball as a youngster in Westchester County helped the San Francisco Giants win the World Series on Wednesday night, Oct. 29.
Joe Panik celebrated his 24th birthday on Thursday with a World Series win after the Giants beat the Kansas City Royals, 3-2, in the decisive seventh game of the series.
Panik was born in Yonkers and the family moved to Mohegan Lake. The family moved to Hopewell Junction when he was about 10 years old, and he played for John Jay-East Fishkill in high school. He played in college at St. John’s University.
He made his major league debut on June 21 of this year against Arizona. He played in 73 games and had a .307 batting average with one home run and 18 RBIs. He hit .233 with a home run and eight RBIs in the post season.
Panik was drafted in the first round of the 2011 amateur draft by the Giants after his junior year at St. John’s.
““I think we knew when we had him he was a once-in-a-lifetime kid,” his high school coach, Tom O’Hare, said in a interview with the The Daily News. “Everyone had a feeling he was special. Such tremendous talent, so low-maintenance. He used to ask all the time how he could get better.”
One of Panik’s biggest hits of the playoffs came in Game 5 of the National League Championship Series against St. Louis. His two-run home run off St. Louis ace Adam Wainwright put the Giants ahead in the seventh inning, 2-1. The Giants won the league championship two innings later on a three-run walkoff home run by Travis Ishikawa.
Click here to sign up for Daily Voice's free daily emails and news alerts.