Holidays all about family for Astros' Giles

Holidays all about family for Astros' Giles

It's been a whirlwind few months for Ken Giles. He settled nicely into the role as the closer for the Phillies, got married and went on a honeymoon in November, and then had to deal with a week of trade rumors before being sent to the Astros in a seven-player deal earlier this month.

This will be Giles' first Christmas as a member of the Astros family, and his first as the husband of Estela Pinon, who pitched for two years at the University of Arizona and was drafted and played with the Chicago Bandits of the National Pro Fastpitch League. Pinon also pitched for Mexico during the World Cup of Softball last summer.

Giles, who will spend the holidays in the couple's home in Phoenix, recently talked to MLB.com about what makes Christmas special to him:

MLB.com: What are some of your fondest memories about Christmas growing up?

Giles: Getting those brand new aluminum bats back in the day. That's one of those things you always waited for Christmas to get that $200 bat that could last you forever. It was one of those things, you think you could get the Omaha bat and just instantly hit home runs.

MLB.com: Is that always what you asked for, baseball equipment?

Giles: It was mostly an expensive bat or video games. That's dying out now to the point where I don't even need presents. I just want to be around families now.

MLB.com: Is there any special gift you got as a child that wasn't baseball related that kind of stands out to you to this day?

Giles: I got a dirt bike one year. That was exciting. And then I wrecked it and it landed on top of me. But my mom sold it without me knowing, so I think that burnt out pretty quick.

MLB.com: Did you wreck it on Christmas Day or shortly after?

Giles: During baseball season for Little League. Me and my dad went out a lot, and then I tried to make this jump and I went over the bars and the bike landed on top of me.

MLB.com: What are the holidays like for you nowadays? Where do you spend your time, and who do you spend it with?

Giles: Right now, I spend it with my wife. I've been with her for five years and been married for a month. Just being around family, that's the main thing. We're very family-oriented, and we just love to be around them.

MLB.com: Anything special you asked for this year, or are you one of these guys who feels you've got everything you needed?

Giles: It's one of those things that I've already got everything I needed. I just want to spend as much time with my family, because I'm gone for so long during the season and I rarely get to see them anymore. Maybe I'll get to see them more now that they're a lot closer. Family comes first for me.

MLB.com: Is some Astros gear going to be under the tree for some of your friends and family?

Giles: I need to hit up that store so I can hook up my family now, because all their Phillies stuff has to be in storage now.

Brian McTaggart is a reporter for MLB.com and writes an MLBlog, Tag's Lines. Follow @brianmctaggart on Twitter and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.