Padres’ Roots Run Much Deeper Than Major Leagues

From Brian Hiro at the North (San Diego) County Times on March 25, with quotes from SABR members Bill Swank and Jim Smith:

When most people think of the Padres now, they think of Tony Gwynn. They think of the Swinging Friar. They think of those infamous brown-and-yellow uniforms that made the players look like walking tacos. Theythink, naturally, of the major-league club that was born in 1969.


For almost half their history, the Padres were a minor-league team. They wore not brown and yellow, but instead black and white with pinstripes. Their black hats didn’t even sport a logo until 11 years into their existence. They didn’t have Gwynn, but rather another sweet-swinging left-hander who wore No. 19 — a guy by the name of Ted Williams.

And they played not in state-of-the-art Petco Park, but in a charmingly flawed wooden ballpark at the foot of Broadway called Lane Field. The park was so named for owner Bill “Hardrock” Lane, a former miner who moved his team, the Hollywood Stars, down to San Diego after the landlord of Wrigley Field (yes, there was one in Los Angeles back then) tried to double his rent after the 1935 season.

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Originally published: March 28, 2011. Last Updated: March 28, 2011.