While Other Teams Celebrate Alumni, Padres Continue to Neglect Obvious

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Credit: San Diego Padres

As the freshly cut grass of major league fields all around the country was manicured for Opening Day, one common theme was taking place at most every professional baseball stadium in America.

The fans, who are the heart and soul of the game of baseball, were greeted as they enter the facility by alumni of their favorite teams.

In Atlanta this Opening Day week, former Braves’ players Bob Horner and Darrel Chaney were front and center and enjoying every minute of glory with the fan base. The experience of greeting people as they enter the stadium is not a pleasure reserved for just fans. It is most certainly something that many ballplayers themselves get a kick out of.

This type of marketing gimmick is not a new thing either. It has been done for years by several major league teams. And I am not talking about players who are under payroll for their club, either. I am speaking about bringing in scores of undervalued players that have a soft spot in the hearts of the fans. Players that the fan would have no other way of contacting or rubbing elbows with.

For the Padres, I am speaking about players like Gene Richards, Kevin McReynolds, or Eric Owens. Padres that were revered by the fan base and are not seen in the city of San Diego that much. Fans of all ages would love to meet these guys and reminisce about the old days. The players themselves would enjoy engaging the fans and assisting in educating the masses about Padres baseball.

That is what this would be all about. Education.

Throughout the history of this franchise, the alumni and their involvement in the modern club has been almost non-existent.

Randy Jones, Jake Peavy, Gaylord Perry, and Mark Davis should all be brought together by the team and celebrated at one time. All four men won NL Cy Young Awards with the Padre,s and that is an honor that should be treasured by the organization. These four men, together, on the field in a celebration of their accomplishments, would instantly become one of the greatest moments, outside of baseball, in this franchise’s history.

The Padres have recently become marketing obsessed. It is mind blowing that the franchise does not view the alumni as a credible source of income. Yes, you will have to pay money into the division for it to be done correctly, but the upside is tremendous. Fans would pay a lot of money for the opportunity to play golf, go on a cruise, play in a fantasy baseball camp, go bowling, or just rub elbows with players they idolized when they were kids. The opportunities are endless to both cherish the alumni and generate revenue for the team. Please step up, San Diego Padres, and give the fans something they can treasure for a long time. Memories.

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