It’s the All-Star break and the Padres don’t play again until tomorrow, when they take on the New York Mets at Petco Park. Without baseball games to keep me focused, my thoughts are all over the place again. And you know what that means…..it’s time for To and Fro!
I am a huge fan of the history of the game and you should be too. You can’t know where you are going, until you know where you’ve been. So I’m here to help out.
Here’s your history lesson. Watch this video. It’s called Nineteen Summers and is a video on the Padres MLB history, up to the 1988 season. There will be a quiz on it here at Padres Public this Thursday. Make sure you’ve watched the Old Padres Commercials post from last week as well. You’ll e-mail me your answers and all the people who get 100% on it will be entered into a drawing. One person will win a bundle of awesome Padres vintage goodies. Sounds like fun right?
So get to watching and I’ll be back on Thursday.
There is so much awesomeness in that one commercial. You’ve got RJ in his 1978 jersey (although the 1971 hat is wrong, but still awesome), Cash in the current camo jersey with his mullet flowing beautifully out of the 90′s throwback hat and a little humor to go with it.
I love the commercials that promote the players and have a little humor to them. The fans feel a connection to the players when they see stuff like that and is usually far more powerful than just promoting the team.
As I was browsing You Tube last night I came across two old commercials that I have never seen before.
As I was sitting in my seat during the Padres and Diamondbacks game on June 28th, I noticed a familiar tune blaring through the speakers as Chase Headley walked up to the plate.
I leaned over to Sac Bunt Chris and questioned if this was Headley’s new walk up music or if it was just a coincidence. Chris had no clue, so we waited for the next at bat and sure enough it was played again. And again. And again. All 4 times he came up to bat, it was played.
This past weekend, I came across a 1985 Padres Spring Training program at an estate sale. Anytime I see a program, magazine, newspaper or whatever of the Padres, I scoop it up immediately and add it to my collection. I love reading through these things because first of all, the ads are always fantastic (ly horrible?) and second it’s fascinating to see what was being said about the team at that particular time. Notable in this program is an article about the new uniforms for the 1985 season.
How do you describe the feeling when your childhood idol Tony Gwynn dies? You can’t. That is exactly what I experienced this week when I heard that Tony had passed away at the age of 54. He was the man I pretended to be when playing baseball with my friends. He was the man who was a leader on and off the ball field. He was the man who was so talented.Yet, he went out of his way to be humble. This was my idol – Baseball Hall of Famer Tony Gwynn.
It’s been a terrible year to be a Padre fan.
The team is currently 33-44, are 4th in the NL West and have the 5th worst record in all of baseball. After back to back seasons in which the team finished 76-86, things came to a head earlier this week when the team fired General Manager Josh Byrnes after 2+ seasons where he went a combined 184-216 (.460), which is good enough for 5th best (and worst) in Padres history. It was only the second time the team fired their General Manager mid-season. The other was on June 9th, 1993 when Joe McIlvaine was let go and replaced by Randy Smith. This time Omar Minaya, Fred Uhlman Jr. and A.J. Hinch will take the reigns until the team finds a permanent replacement.
There has been a ton of crazy stuff happening lately. Byrnes and Padres President Mike Dee had separate interviews, on the same radio station, with the same host, in the same day. Both had very different things to say though. Tom Verducci wrote a scathing article about Padres ownership. Jon Heyman also had some harsh words for the group. Most people praised the Padres for parting ways with Byrnes.
Add to this the crazy rumor by Bob Nightengale on the return of “The Gunslinger” Kevin Towers. While it’s clearly an interesting story that will draw in the readers, the likelihood of it happening appears to be slim. Corey Brock lists a talented group of candidates in his latest article, notably absent? KT. Could it be because he’s still employed by the Diamondbacks? Perhaps. But when you see a list that includes the likes of Jason McLeod, David Forst, Mike Girsch, Thad Levine, Billy Eppler, Mike Hazen and Larry Beinfest, it’s really hard to take a potential Towers hiring seriously.
One constant complaint in all of this has been the owners lack of payroll. So let’s take a look at how this off-season played out compared to some other teams.
I am absolutely blown away by the outpouring of tributes out there right now. Tony was, and will always be, one of my idols but it’s crazy to see how many other people he touched out there as well. I’ve shed tears all week long and probably will continue to do so for a while.
Hopefully these stories bring smiles to your face instead of tears.
The Card Shows
In the mid 80′s to the early 90′s, I used to go to monthly baseball card shows at the Scottish Rite Center in Mission Valley. They usually had players there signing autographs and for the most part the players would rarely raise their head or utter one word while signing. They were there to just collect a paycheck and move on. However, that was NEVER the case when Tony Gwynn was signing autographs as he’d stop and chat with each person. And if you somehow didn’t catch word before that Tony was going to be there that night (keep in mind this is wayyyy before social media), that Gwynn laugh would bellow through the halls and you immediately knew he was there.
The line would move slower than molasses, but once you got to the front of the line you forgot all about the wait and realized that Tony was different. He was personable. He was likeable. He was….Tony. Immediately after his first signing that I attended, which I don’t think I said one word to him because I was in complete shock, I insisted on going to buy his 1983 Topps rookie card to add to my small Gwynn collection. I usually had a budget of $10 for every show but I begged and pleaded for that extra $20 to get the $30 card, which seemed like a ton of money to me back then. I didn’t win that battle, however I did acquire the much cheaper 1983 Fleer rookie card that day for $15. I eventually got that 1983 Topps card, along with over 1,000 more Gwynn cards that I cherish greatly to this day.
No more excuses. I have not posted in a while for a number of reasons. The main one being, like fellow RJ’s Fro poster Rick, I too got married recently and it has taken over alot of my free time the past few months. That and of course fiddle rocking with Lexington Field. I apologize. I love the Padres and Padres Public, so it’s time to voice my opinion more! But first, I want to just rant and I have a completely unrealistic plan to share with you. The fans are done. We are done with this mediocre joke of a team and something needs to change. Here are some off-the-wall suggestions as I venture back to the posting world of Padres Public. I can’t wait to see what Mike Dee decides to do.
After back to back seasons in which the team went 76-86 in 2012 and 2013, there were very little changes made to the 2014 Opening Day offense. Weird, right?
Now as we sit here on June 12th, the Padres are bad. Like really, really, really bad. Like you’d rather be violently ill than watch them swing a bat, bad. And in fact, FanGraphs even currently projects the Padres to finish, yeah you guessed it, 76-86 yet again. Consistency be thy name.
Lets take a look at some familiar names to the lineup from the past few years.