All-Star Game Weekend 2016.

Back in July of last year, my brother and I made the trek to attend the All-Star Game festivities in San Diego. I filled my trip by attending MLB Fanfest (twice), visiting the chaos that was the All-Star Game Street Fair, and going to both the Futures Game and Home Run Derby. In addition to this, I attended the grand opening of the AleSmith Tony Gwynn Museum, which was pretty amazing and possibly my favorite part of the weekend. Needless to say, I was a bit burnt out by the time Tuesday rolled around and I decided to watch the All-Star Game on television.

Since then, I’ve toyed with the idea of writing a post about the trip and including some photos, but it just never materialized as it seemed a bit unnecessary. Well, I recently figured out how to create a slideshow and this sparked my interest in sharing my photos from the weekend. These photos are nothing special and were all taken on my iPhone, but still, I figure that some of you will appreciate them – regardless if it’s half a year late. With that said, enjoy the photos and the celebration that was San Diego baseball!

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Padres Pics #10.

WINFIELD VS. RYAN.
nolan-ryan-dave-winfeldDuring a 1980 game against the Astros, Dave Winfield was drilled by Nolan Ryan and Winny decided to take matters into his own hands by charging the mound. According to Winfield, Ryan “had brushed him back twice in the game with inside pitches.” I guess that was more than enough for Winfield, and according to all mentions of the incident, he got the best of Ryan by connecting with the punch he’s ready to throw in the above photo.

I don’t believe there were any other physical altercations between Ryan and Winfield during their careers, but I do know that in the 1985 All-Star Game, Ryan threw high and tight to Winfield, before giving up a hard hit single up the middle. Winfield later admitted to trying to hit Ryan with the ball; but has since publicly said they are now friends, due to being members of the Hall of Fame. 

(Image Source: Associated Press)

GWYNN’S DEBUT.
tony-gwynn-first-game-ticketTony Gwynn made his debut on July 19th, 1982 in a game against the Phillies at Jack Murphy Stadium. This ticket, owned by Fred O. Rogers, is from that historic day. I wonder if anyone in attendance that Monday night had the slightest idea that Gwynn would go down as one of the greatest hitters of all time and become the face of the Padres franchise for over two decades? Probably not. Also, the images of the Friar and Jack Murphy Stadium on the ticket make this ticket nearly perfect. Now only if the ticket was brown instead of red…

(Image Source: Fred O. Rogers via “Baseball 1857 through 1993“)

1978 ALL STAR GAME.
1978-all-star-game-san-diego
A snapshot into the National League dugout during the 1978 All-Star Game, which was held at Jack Murphy Stadium. I love the fact that Padres teammates, Dave Winfield and Rollie Fingers are sitting next to each other This photo was snapped and shared by the Padres former VP of Marketing, Andy Strasburg. This is what he had to say about it:

“When the Padres hosted the 1978 MLB All-Star Game, one of my responsibilities was the pre-game ceremony. I was down on the field directing traffic that included player introductions. Moments before Padres public address announcer John DeMott intros each player I whirl around and snap a photo of the players (Willie, Jack, Winny and Rollie) who have yet to put their game face on.”

This is such an awesome image to capture and memory to have. Since leaving the Padres, Strasburg has put out two books, “Baseball Fantography” and “Fantography – San Diego Baseball,” which I strongly suggest purchasing, as they are filled with many interesting and candid baseball-related images.

(Image Source: Andy Strasburg)

Padres Pics #9.

WRIGLEY.Cito Gaston WrigleyThis photo of the Padres playing the Cubs at Wrigley Field is great; even though the call did not go San Diego’s way. One thing that puzzles me though, is that I can’t figure out who the player sliding into home is? Based on uniforms, I’m lead to believe that this photo was taken in 1974 or 1975 and the player in question is either Jerry Turner, John Scott or Bobby Tolan. If anyone knows for sure, definitely let me know. One thing I do know is that the catcher is future-Padre, Steve Swisher and that’s obviously Cito Gaston standing in the background.

GWYNN & ROSE.
Tony Gwynn 1st Career Hit Pete Rose
On July 19th, 1982, Tony Gwynn made his major league debut, in a game against the Phillies at Jack Murphy Stadium. Pete Rose, who was playing first base that night, met Tony at second base after his first major league hit. Rose congratulated him and jokingly said something along the lines of “Don’t catch me in one night.” This may be a well known story, but I still don’t think I’ve ever seen video of his first hit, let alone his interaction with Rose. Needless to say, I was happy when @BenHigginsSD shared this screenshot on twitter earlier this year, which captures Gwynn right after he rolled into second base with Rose right behind him. 

After looking over the box score from that historic night, two interesting things crossed my mind:

  • Gwynn’s first plate appearance may not of been a hit, but it was productive; as he hit a sacrifice fly against future Giants broadcaster, Mike Krukow. You may ask yourself who scored on that sacrifice fly? Well, that would be the one and only Tim Flannery, who one day would have the interesting honor of being number #2 on games played list for players who spent their entire playing career on the Padres. He “only” trails Tony Gwynn by close to 1500 games.  (Thanks to @ChangeThePadres for this little fun fact)
  • Gwynn had 5 at-bats that night and didn’t even get his first hit until the bottom of the 8th inning, against Sid Monge, who would later be his teammate in 1983 & 1984. Tony later came up again in the bottom of the 9th, where he hit a single against Ron Reed. An interesting thing about Reed is that just like Gwynn, he was also a college basketball star who got drafted by an NBA team. I can’t imagine there being an incredibly long list of MLB players who were also drafted by NBA teams, so this caught my eye. With that said, unlike Gwynn, Reed actually pursued professional basketball and played for the Pistons during the ’65/66 & ’66/67 NBA seasons.
  • Gwynn went 2 for 4 that day and all three of the balls he successfully put into play (sacrifice fly, double and single) were hit to centerfield. Both of his “unsuccessful” at-bats took place against Sid Monge and resulted in a lineout to the shortstop and a strikeout. Not a bad day for 22 year old kid making his major league debut.

GWYNN & GRANT.
Tony Gwynn & Mark Grants Padres
I recently came across this photo and it warmed my heart, as it captures two of the most beloved individuals in organizational history. Tony Gwynn, Mark Grant and Padres brown?? it doesn’t get much better than this!

Speaking of Mudcat, did anyone catch on to the fact that he’s been part of the Padres broadcasting team now for over 20 years? I don’t remember the Padres doing anything to celebrate this. It would be awesome if the team honored him with a promotional item next season, just to bring attention to the time he’s spent in San Diego. I suggest a Grant #55 brown jersey giveaway or Grant bobblehead from his playing days. I’d prefer the bobblehead, but eh, we know how the team feels about them. (Image Source: Getty Images)

Padres Pics #7.

1984.
1984 Padres World Series
I believe this photo was taken prior to Game 1 of the 1984 World Series, at Jack Murphy Stadium. While this specific photo only seems to include bench players, bullpen guys and coaches, it’s still pretty cool if you ask me.

GWYNN.
For ages, I’ve looked for video of Tony Gwynn’s 1997 inside the park grand slam against the Dodgers and today I finally found it. Skip forward to 0:37 in the video and you will find Tony going oppo in the grandest of ways. The only downside to this clip is that after the hit, it only shows Tony coming down the third baseline and sliding into home. I would LOVE to see him running the bases, even at that stage in his career.

LYNN.
Fred Lynn PadresRecently, while looking through some old Padres cards from my childhood, I came across a few Fred Lynn cards from both 1990 and 1991. I’d forgotten that Lynn was a Padre at one point and after during a little research, it turns out that San Diego was the last stop of his seventeen year career. Lynn played only one season in San Diego (1990) and the 38 year old didn’t fare all that well, as he put up a .240/.315/.357 clip with 6 home runs over 90 games.

I guess Lynn could’ve done a lot worse in 1990 and since there are Padres cards of him for the 1991 season, I’m lead to believe the team considered bringing him back the following season on a minor league contract or spring training invite. With that all said, it’s odd seeing Lynn in a Padres uniform, but wow, does that brown looks great or what?

Padres Pics #4.

GWYNN.Tony Gwynn First HitOn July 19th, 1982, the Padres played the Phillies at Jack Murphy Stadium. Batting 5th in the lineup and starting in centerfield was a youngster making his major league debt by the name of Tony Gwynn. In his first major league at-bat, he hit a sacrifice fly against Mike Krukow in the bottom of the first inning. Later in the game, he got his first major league hit with a double to centerfield against Sid Monge in the bottom of the 8th inning. The above photo captures this historic moment.

.1969.
1969 Padres Original Lineup
The San Diego Padres Opening Day lineup for for their first regular season game, which took place on April 8th, 1969. The game took place at Jack Murphy Stadium (then known as San Diego Stadium) and the Friars beat the Astros, 2 to 1.

Here’s the who’s featured in the photo (L to R): Rafael Robles, Roberto Pena, Tony Gonzalez, Ollie Brown, Bill Davis, Larry Stahl, Ed Spiezio, Chris Cannizzaro, and starting pitcher Dick Selma and manager Preston Gomez to the right. (Photo Source: The San Diego Union Tribune)

A few fun facts about this game and the 1969 team:
1) This first Padre homerun was hit by Ed Spiezio in the bottom of the 5th inning of this game. Spiezio is the father of former big leaguer, Scott Spiezio.

2) Former Padre star and team leader in homeruns for the 1969 team, Nate Colbert did not start the game. He entered as a defensive substitution at first base in the 5th inning and finished the game without an at-bat.

3) The lone All-Star representing the inaugural Padres in 1969 was catcher Chris Cannizzaro. Honestly, how he was an All-Star that season baffles me. In any case, besides being an original member of the MLB Padres, he was also an original member of the Mets back in 1962. Kinda cool.

(Photo Source: The San Diego Union Tribune)

PEAVY.
Jake Peavy vs Alfonso Soriano
On June 15th, 2007, Cubs slugger Alfonso Soriano hit a homerun off of Padres starting pitcher, David Wells. Soriano pimped it out the box and actually trotted backwards for a bit down the first baseline. Needless to say, the Padres were not happy with this and Jake Peavy let it be known with the above quote, which I LOVED. I will forever be a fan of Peavy for his days in San Diego and can say he’s still easily my favorite pitcher in the game.

The following day, Chris Young hit Cubs first baseman (and former Padre) Derrek Lee in the 4th inning and a brawl ensued. If you’ve never seen the video, I suggest checking it out HERE. The 5’8 Marcus Giles pushing the 6’10 Chris Young out of danger is quite amusing.