By Maria Eaton
As a young girl, I have always dreamed of playing baseball, even softball, since I could remember. Unfortunately that wasn’t the case. But my parents took me to my first San Diego Padres game in 1998 and I just remember hearing the sound of the crowd as they cheered and the smell of ballpark food. The memories of it all just took me back, and also reminiscing on moments in history such as Tony Gwynn’s 3000th hit to witnessing Trevor Hoffman closing out games with “Hell’s Bells” as he comes out to the mound. I have become more of a San Diego Padres fan because of my parents and when they took me to my first game that’s when I fell in love with baseball at first sight.
Fast forward to my first Opening Day weekend game on Sunday, March 31st, 2019. I didn’t know what to expect but we knew Chris Paddack was making his major league debut and I had to be there to support him. One of my Twitter friends, Sharon, invited me and we had seats by the bullpen and it was warm that day! Sitting by the bullpen was an experience like no other. Getting to see Kirby Yates, Austin Hedges, Chris Paddack, Phil Maton, Trey Wingenter and the other guys walk from the dugout to the bullpen is fun to see. But seeing Chris Paddack dominating on the mound and the team getting the 3-1 win against the San Francisco Giants was the moment when I became more of a fan. Having our Padres Twitter meetup in the 4th inning behind home plate was just an experience and what I miss the most seeing all my friends.
My love for the Padres has made me who I am today a person who loves and supports her team no matter what the results win or loss and watching these baseball films such as: A League of Their Own, Sandlot, Angels in the Outfield, and Moneyball. My passion for the game didn’t come until I was 14 or 15 because as a young girl I never understood what the sport was about till I became a little older and ever since then I’ve always been passionate about the team including our minor league teams and the younger players coming up such as Luis Urias, Franmil Reyes, Mackenzie Gore, and Luis Patino.
The unveiling of the new uniforms for me was also why I got more excited to see what the next year’s Padres will look like with the brown and gold and hopefully this year or next year we will be able to get to the World Series and what would I do without my Padres Twitter friends?! The ballpark experience has made me feel more excited to see the guys play and I look forward to the 4th inning meetups! #BrownIsBack.