Fans forced to choose between playoff baseball, work

An expected sellout crowd is descending on San Francisco’s AT&T Park today for the Giants’ playoff game against the Philadelphia Phillies — just don’t tell their bosses.

The Giants are hosting the Phillies in Game 3 of the National League Championship Series this afternoon. The game is scheduled to start at 1:19 p.m., smack dab in the middle of the workday.

Jaime Montes drove out from Sacramento to see the game with his son and daughter.

“I have work and they have school, but this is a special event,” Montes said. “They’ll remember this.”

Laurie, a woman from Novato who declined to give her last name, said she took vacation days in advance of the series so she could come to the games.

She said she is excited for the team, which is making its first playoff appearance since 2003.

“This is a scrappy bunch of guys,” she said. “You never know what’s going to happen with this group.”

Many fans were decked out in panda hats and fake beards in honor of some of the team’s more colorful personalities, third baseman Pablo Sandoval and closer Brian Wilson.

Crowds were already milling about near the ballpark midmorning, including a group who had painted a vintage truck in Giants colors and decorated it with team memorabilia.

In the sea of orange and black, there were smatterings of red, the color of the visiting Phillies.

Larry Gardner said he and two fellow Phillies fans flew out from Philadelphia to see the game.

Gardner said he has work in San Francisco that will prevent him from going to Wednesday’s game, but he “squeezed it in today.”

Gardner said he wasn’t worried about being heckled by Giants fans.

“We’re from Philly, so we’ve got thick skin,” he said.

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