Always Belong to Us
As some of you may have heard, LaDanian Tomlinson signed a restuctured three-year contract with the San Diego Chargers last week. To be honest, it really went under my radar. I heard a snippet in the morning news on the radio, but that was it. Then again, I don’t listen to sports radio, so I probably missed it. After the Chargers lost in the playoffs, I realized that I had jumped on the bandwagon, and once they were done, I jumped right off. Now I don’t want anything to do with football. It’s baseball time. So, I am not here to talk about LT that much. Yeah, I’ve gotta talk about Trevor…again.
Trevor Hoffman and LaDainian Tomlinson are two major San Diego sports icons. Trevor was here for sixteen seasons. LT has been here for eight years. In fact, he was drafted by the Chargers. Now, there’s no doubt that both of these men have made huge impacts on the city of San Diego, both on the field and off. I don’t know if it’s just because they don’t like the Padres, but people are comparing Trevor to LT and saying that Trevor has less class because he left.
On Sunday I read the weekly letters to the editor in the sports section of the Union-Tribune. Aw man that drove me nuts! First off, there’s one from a man who lives in San Diego and says that, “…in the end he (Trevor) did not demonstrate the class of the athlete we had thought we knew so well.” This guy is talking about the fact that Trevor “takes the bigger money to leave town.” Uh, correction! Trevor was kicked out of San Diego. He didn’t have a choice but to leave. Sure, he could have taken the $4 million, but the Padres’ front office didn’t want him back. That was obvious. I mean, $4 million, no options. Not good enough. The front office did not treat him with the respect he deserves and has earned over all these years in San Diego!! Trevor’s brought so much to this city, and to this team! It was one of the worst things the Padres’ front office has ever done.
Tony Gwynn spend twenty years in a Padres uniform. He was never part of another team. He certainly took less money to stay in San Diego. And guess what? Trevor has done that too. The last time Trevor was a free agent, the Indians offered him a great contract. He could have been gone years ago. But he stayed with the Padres, with a much lower contract. He did that because he loves San Diego, just like Tony Gwynn. He would not leave it if he could help it. Trevor did not leave San Diego willingly this offseason. He was forced to. You can’t sign with a team if they don’t want you. Merely hours before his signing with the Brewers, he contacted the Padres again, to see if there was any hope of negotiations. The Padres said no. THEY DON’T WANT HIM!!! I don’t know why. I’ve been struggling with this all offseason.
So now he’s with the Brewers. He still loves San Diego. It is my hope that he will be back here to pitch again for his team next year. But Trevor didn’t sign with the Dodgers. He could have. The Dodgers look like they are going to be very good this year. They have a chance to go deep into the postseason. Plus, they were just up the road. But he know what that would do to Padres fans. He wants to be here, but to make it easier for the San Diego fans, he signed with the Brewers. It also helped that the Brewers pursued him. Probably more than LA did.
Another letter in the Union-Tribune said: “Tim Sullivan’s column, ‘CEO Spanos makes it clear…’ was so very nice, and right on. For the first time ever, he made me cry. Specifically, his line, ‘LT might play for some other team, but he will always belong to us,’ brought tears to my eyes. Trading LaDainian Tomlinson to another team at this stage of his career would be akin to the Padres trading Tony Gwynn to the Dodgers…” etc etc. Do you see it? You could use this letter to perfectly describe Trevor! “Trevor might play for some other team, but he will always belong to us.” “Trading Trevor Hoffman to another team at this stage of his career would be akin to the Padres trading LaDainion Tomlinson to the Raiders…” I think you get the point.
Trevor is as good of a person and a player as LT. And though the city of San Diego gets to enjoy watching LT play for at least three more years, we’re not going to have our all-time saves leader here, at least not yet. Padres GM Kevin Towers has said that he would at least like Trevor to sign with the Padres, get one save, and that would be enough. I agree. We would love to have him here longer, like a whole season, but if that’s all he’s got left in him, we will settle with one game. Just to see him again in that Padres uniform, to hear Hell’s Bells ringing through Petco Park for one last time, to see him pitch, would be incredible. I want to be at that game.
So, that’s what we true die-hard Padres fans are longing for. We want our closer back. Maybe one more game. Maybe one more season. We just want him back in San Diego. He will always belong to us. And we want him back where he belongs.
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Be sure to check out the Max Madness that’s going on over at the Max blog. My turn will be coming around sometime in the next few days, and I would really appreciate votes! I’m going up against another popular blog, so it will be a battle to see who comes out on top. But it’s all in fun, so I would love to move up, but if not, I won’t boycott MLBlogs or anything :) Thanks for the votes!
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Today the Padres are playing the Los Angeles Angels in Peoria. I have no idea who’s starting. All I know is that the game is at 1 pm and that Kyle Blanks will be playing first.
UPDATE: Corey Brock posted his entry just after I posted mine, so I now have the lineup:
CF Jody Gerut
2B David Eckstein
RF Brian Giles
3B Kevin Kouzmanoff
1B Kyle Blanks
LF Chase Headley
C Eliezer Alfonso
SS Luis Rodriguez
SP Josh Geer
Followed by pitchers Greg Burke, Scott Patterson, Ivan Nova and Mark Worrell. Geer is supposed to go five innings.
Looks like Team Mexico got eliminated last night, so the Gonzalez boys and Scotty Hairston should be back in camp soon. That will be good. But tonight is a do-or-die game for Team USA. That will be very interesting. Team USA is dealing with a lot of injuries right now. This is pretty concerning. These guys need to be ready to play in the regular season!
Also, I’d like to welcome back Friar Fan, who started a Padres blog late last year and is now getting back into it. It’s so great to get all these Padres bloggers here! I am very excited. This blog never really got welcomed into the community, so go say hi!
Well, today is St. Patrick’s Day. I’m pretty sure I have some Irish blood somewhere from my parents, but a holiday isn’t a holiday if you don’t get work and school off. That’s what I think. And plus, I don’t like the color green. So, I’m a big St. Patrick’s Day humbug, but Happy St. Patrick’s Day anyway!
(editor’s letters quotes credit to the San Diego Union-Tribune)