Happy Birthday, Mr. Padre!

Today is Tony Gwynn‘s 54th birthday.

I can hardly believe Tony is 54.  It seems like just yesterday I was sitting in Jack Murphy Stadium (notice I didn’t say Qualcomm?) watching him battle Willie McGee or Will Clark for a batting title.*

*I’m old.  No, seriously, I’m really old now.

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Allow me to tell you a funny story that involved Tony and my brother, Mark.

My brother, as some of you may know, is a San Francisco Giants fan.  The reason why that is:  Will Clark.

Back on August 4, 1993, my mom & brother were going to Jack Murphy Stadium to watch the Padres take on the Giants.  I was working that night, so I was unable to go with them.  My brother, attempting to get a rise out of me, proposed a bet around whether or not Clark would outhit Tony that night.  I decided to one-up his bet.  I counter-offered that not only would Tony outhit Clark, he would also go 5 for 5 that night.  If I was correct, my brother would have to buy me the Gwynn Topps rookie card from 1983, the only one I didn’t have at the time.  If I was incorrect, nothing would happen.

Wouldn’t you know it, Tony went 6 for 7 that night against the legendary Greg Brummett, with his only out coming with a lineout in his 3rd at-bat to — of all people — Clark at 1B.  Son of a b–…

The next morning, as I perused the box score in the paper, my mom told me about how my brother let out a gasp as Tony hit that liner, held his breath ever so slightly, and let out a sigh of relief as Clark caught the ball.

Suffice it to say, I didn’t get that Topps rookie card until I bought it some time later.

Oh, well.  It’s makes a pretty good story.

So, happy birthday, Tony! Get well soon.

*****

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  • Billy Lybarger

    Tell me more about being old, Ghost.