SAN FRANCISCO
09/05/2011 08:27 pm ET Updated Dec 06, 2017

Brandon Belt, Giants Player Nicknamed 'Baby Giraffe,' Meets Giraffe Named After Him

Most professional baseball players don't do it for the fame or the money or the women. Or even the spandex tuxedos.

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The vast majority of them submit to the countless, mind-numbing hours of training and the countless even more mind-numbing hours actually playing baseball for one reason and one reason alone—the opportunity to meet the baby zoo animals named after them.

When sportscaster Duane Kuiper dubbed Giants rookie Brandon Belt "baby giraffe," it was only a matter of time before a local, sports-loving zookeeper returned the favor by naming an actual baby giraffe after the first-baseman.

Much like Pablo Sandoval's "Kung Fu Panda" monicker, Belt's "baby giraffe" nickname has struck a chord with the increasing numbers of Giants fans showing up to games at AT&T Park wearing giraffe hats.

The popularity of the name spread so far that when a giraffe was born at Six Flags Discovery Kingdom in Vallejo, they named him "Brandon."
Before noon on August 27, the male giraffe calf was born to mother Makali and sire Nyumekye, a male that had been on loan to Discovery Kingdom from Santa Rosa’s Safari West.

On Thursday, Belt met his new favorite giraffe face to face.

"This morning has been one of the best mornings of my life," Belt told http://espn.go.com/espn/page2/index?id=6921546 ESPN. "To have a newborn giraffe named after me, let alone me standing side-by-side him, it's amazing."

Brandon the giraffe could not be reached for comment.

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