On Tuesday, Justin Upton will become the 43rd different Padre to represent San Diego at the MLB All-Star Game. Here are five of the most memorable Padre moments in the history of the Midsummer Classic.
5. Heath Bell
July 12, 2011, Chase Field, Phoenix, AZ
The most recent Padre appearance in an All-Star Game was in 2011 by then-closer Heath Bell. The hard-throwing right-hander retired the only batter he faced, but it is his entrance from the bullpen that will go down in All-Star Game lore. When he was called on by NL manager Bruce Bochy, Bell stole the show by sprinting full-speed from the home bullpen before sliding into the pitcher’s mound.
FOX, which was airing the game, acted quickly on the entrance. Less than a minute later, the network aired a graphic showing Bell’s average fastball speed as 98 MPH, and his 100-yard dash time as 10.2 seconds.
July 19, 1977, Yankee Stadium, New York, NY
Winfield was the Friars’ only representative at the 1977 All-Star Game at Yankee Stadium. The Hall of Fame outfielder’s two-run single off Sparky Lyle in the top of the eighth inning proved to be the difference in the NL’s 7-5 victory.
3. Randy Jones
July 13, 1976, Veterans Stadium, Philadelphia, PA
Jones was in the midst of his Cy Young year when he started the 1976 All-Star Game in Philadelphia. The Padre southpaw’s 16-3 record at the All-Star break is the most of all-time, and his electric pitching carried into the All-Star Game. He pitched three scoreless innings and picked up the win as the NL triumphed, 7-1.
2. LaMarr Hoyt
July 16, 1985, Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome, Minneapolis, MN
The 1985 All-Star Game featured a franchise record seven representatives from the reigning NL champion Padres. Five Padres were starters, including the starting pitcher Hoyt. The right-hander pitched three innings and gave up two hits and zero unearned runs, and picked up the win in the NL’s 6-1 victory. Hoyt remains the only Padre in history to win the All-Star Game MVP.
1. Tony Gwynn
July 12, 1994, Three Rivers Stadium, Pittsburgh, PA
In a 1994 season that would later yield a .394 average,and a batting title, Mr. Padre played the entirety of the Midsummer Classic in Pittsburgh. Gwynn was the starting center fielder and recorded two hits in five at-bats, and scored the winning run in the 10th inning on a double by Moises Alou. Gwynn, running all the way from first base, slid into home plate just under the tag by catcher Ivan Rodriguez.
The 8-7 win snapped a six-year losing streak for the NL.
Bonus: Tony Gwynn
July 13, 1999, Fenway Park, Boston, MA
Gwynn’s sixteen All-Star selections produced many memorable moments for Padre fans, but the right-fielder’s personal favorite came in 1999. Despite missing the game due to injury, Gwynn was an integral part of the pre-game ceremonies, which included a tribute to his idol and San Diego sports legend Ted Williams. Williams, who was rendered partially blind by a series of strokes, was aided by Gwynn in throwing out the ceremonial first pitch.
The 1999 All-Star Game was one of Williams’ final public appearances before his death in 2002.