The San Diego Padres look exciting now with their “fearsome foursome” of Fernando Tatis Jr., Manny Machado, Juan Soto, and Xander Bogaerts, not to mention their excellent starting pitchers.
However, long before those players were even in the organization, Tony Gwynn paved the way.
He played long enough to be a member of both of the Padres’ World Series appearances: one in 1984, and the other in 1998.
They lost both, but along the way, Gwynn became “Mr. Padre” and achieved all kinds of franchise records.
He was so prolific that he would still lead a few important offensive categories in franchise history if we cut his career in half.
“If Gwynn’s 20-year career were split into two careers, 10 seasons apiece, he would rank first and second in @Padres history in runs, hits, total bases and doubles,” MLB Stats tweeted.
If Gwynn’s 20-year career were split into two careers, 10 seasons apiece, he would rank first and second in @Padres history in runs, hits, total bases and doubles. https://t.co/CSgsPimtRk
— MLB Stats (@MLBStats) May 9, 2023
That’s an incredible fact and goes to show how much more than any other player he contributed to the 80s and 90s Padres.
It’s an excellent day to remember Gwynn for what he was: one of the best hitters of all time.
He was born on this day, May 9, in 1960.
He made his MLB debut in 1982, at age 22.
He played his entire career in San Diego and became a larger-than-life figure for fans there.
He was an eight-time National League batting champion, a 15-time All-Star, a five-time Gold Glove winner, and a seven-time Silver Slugger.
His Hall of Fame induction came calling in 2007, obviously on the first ballot.
His .338 career batting average would be a dream outcome for hitter in any given season.
Truly one of the great ones, he left us in 2014, and the baseball universe misses him dearly.NEXT: MLB Honors A Late Legend On His Birthday