Padres Baseball: The Comedy of Friar Follies

M.T. RobinsonCorrespondent IJuly 1, 2009

8 Apr 1996:  The San Diego Chicken flips a Florida Marlins player during the San Diego Padres 9-2 win over the Marlins at Jack Murphy Stadium in San Diego, California. Mandatory Credit: Stephen Dunn/Allsport

Padre fans unite for a laugh. God knows, we could use one.

After 40 Padre seasons, some of the questions that need to be asked are asked.

Which team spends more on lawn care than player care? The Padres.

The infield at Petco is perfect—too bad the players using it aren't. I recently got to go on the field at Petco, and I have never seen a better surface—not even on a golf course. Then, the immortal Josh Wilson (since cut) took his spot where Ozzie Smith and Garry Templeton used to roam (at the Q). What a reality check.

Which team has consistently sent All Star players out in trade for bums over the last three decades? The Padres.

All Star and World Series champion First Baseman Fred Mcgriff to the Braves for Melvin Nieves comes to mind. Heck, I could have gotten more than that for the Crime Dog in any fantasy league in America.

McGriff led the Chop Shop crew to a World Series title in 1993, while Nieves led the Padres into the basement and was gone like a burned out light bulb.The list is endless: John Kruk. Roberto Alomar, Mike Hargrove, even Xavier Nady. At least we got value for Ozzie Smith.

Which team has had the most color combinations in recent memory? The Padres.

Lets see—brown, gold, white, blue, orange, sand, yellow—did I leave anything out?

Padres fans look positively schizophrenic in the stands, even on the road. I suppose in a way, it makes us unique. I envy fans of teams like the Yankees or the Dodgers; your gear from 50 years ago still works, while mine gets more out of date every five to seven years. I have my hat from 1980, and I plan on wearing it forever.

The current combo of white, blue and freaking sand is the worst one the Pads have ever used; only the Blue tops look cool. These current uni's are worse that the Taco Bell day shift togs from 1982-1984, and that's saying something. Bring back the brown, gold, and white from the early 70's. I never saw a Friar wearing sand in a Robin Hood movie.

Which team used a World Series apperance to extort a new ballpark out of the strapped taxpayers? The Padres (Extort is the word; we might have to move without it, Padre fans).

Petco Park was touted to be the end of the Padres financial problems, giving Padre fans exciting free agent acquisitions on par with the Yanks and Dodgers—not. And in giving up 30,000 seats, the Pads have lost massive revenue, as well as their tremendous home field advantage, as anyone who attended Playoff games in both venues can tell you.

Qualcomm Stadium was a tidal wave of noise during 1984 and 1998. Petco just can't generate that kind of pandemonium.

Or, maybe I'm just nitpicking. Let's see—70,000 screaming Padre fans vs 41,000 wallet toting corporate execs spending 150 dollars per hour on imperialist tidbits, while watching from inside the ballpark bar.

It's a great ballpark, but so is the Q, and the money spent on Petco could have upgraded the Q for the next 50 years, or at least repaved the lot down there, which last saw fresh asphalt about the time that former President Gerry Ford was hitting spectators with golf balls.

I say give Petco to the Chargers, add 25,000 seats in the outfield, and send the Friars back to the Q.

In fairness, the Pads do seem to be getting a little better, at a glacial pace, but methinks a World Series Title is a ways off.

My worst fear is that Becky Moores will be given the Padres in the Divorce settlement, and she will bring in Chub (middle finger salute) Feeny to run things again (Chub is long dead), while changing the Padres colors to Pink and Purple with Chartruse trim. Then, we trade Jake Peavy for John (I love people) Rocker, and the rights to Ty Cobbs' Shoelaces.

Ok, maybe I have become cynical. Maybe it's all awesome around here, and I am just a morbid complainer. Maybe I should just shut up, and wave my Padre pennant mindlessly, like so many of my beach towel clutching brethren. Maybe 60-102 and $30 beers is all I can ever expect, and I should just enjoy the nice weather. Maybe the next time Yankee fans tell me that we suck, I should buy them a beer for being so right.

Nah. I choose to excercise my God given New York right to bitch and complain about everyething. 

If I had known the future back in the 70s, maybe I would have lived somewhere else. My best friend lived and died with the Pads, and he literally did die last year without ever seeing a title. That is not my goal, but given the current state of the Padres, that grave looks awfully inviting. Eternal peaceful sleep, as opposed to watching the Expansion El Paso Chipmunks win a World Series in their first season. Go Chipmunks!

It's sad, but true. Oh well, at least we had the best franchise in the history of professional sports here in San Diego, the amazing Clippers.

Has anyone seen The Kid From Left Field lately? It's a movie where Gary Coleman manages the Padres to a World Series title. It brings me comfort.

Talk show host Gary Collins is our best player. Ed McMahon is the team president, and, little Gary literally runs from the Star of India's harbor berth to the stadium in less than four hours, during game seven of the World Series. Good stuff! Where is Mary Anne Mobley when you need her?

Don't take me too seriously, folks, I know how some (most) of you in the world today have no sense of humor, and will take every word I wrote as a personal dagger into your heart. 

But, more than likely, time will march on, and my words will turn to dust, and the Pads will continue to wander the desert. It's all good. At least we have always had the coolest mascot in sports history, the San Diego Chicken. Phillie Phanatic? Bah! The Go-Rilla? Feh.

Go Chicken! Thirty years from not it will still be making people laugh.

Go Padres! Long live Randy Jones! Chub, Chub, Chub!


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