Tagged: trevor hoffman

Goodbye, Heath. Nice having you here.

San Diego Padres’ Heath Bell pumps his fist after striking out Pittsburgh Pirates’ Xavier Nady to end the eighth inning in their baseball game in San Diego, Sept. 17, 2007. (AP Photo/Lenny Ignelzi)

I’ve been a Padres fan for about five years, and I’ve seen the team go from full of star players to no better than a minor league team. Those star players didn’t help out on the winning side, but the Padres were much more glamorous five years ago.

In the past five years, we’ve lost Jake Peavy, Trevor Hoffman, Kevin Kouzmanoff, Chris Young, Greg Maddux, Adrian Gonzalez, Khalil Greene, Brian Giles, Mike Adams and now finally Heath Bell.

The Padres don’t have any starpower anymore. You could probably argue for someone like Mat Latos or Nick Hundley, who have been here for a while, but they don’t have the kind of appeal Jake Peavy and Trevor Hoffman had when they were here. The organization has officially been left faceless. They have officially become a minor league team.

They’ve been playing like a minor league team long enough, and now our last real star player is gone, so that brings us down a level.

It’s so sad.

Then there’s another thing. We got rid of Mike Adams in July. Who on earth is going to close for us? At least we still have Luke Gregerson.

I say let’s bring back Trevor Hoffman. I’m sure he’s still got another season in him.

Well, Heath, we are going to miss you. Not only were you a decent closer, but you were a really entertaining guy. Best of luck with the Marlins and their strange-looking new uniforms.

GO PADRES!!

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Oh yeah, there was a game yesterday too…

In all the Trevor Hoffman excitement yesterday, the actual game sort of flew under the radar. But it’s worth knowing about, because it was a seriously great game.

Cory Luebke started it, and he carried a no-hitter to the fourth inning with two outs, just like he did on his outing before (on Tuesday.) The no-hitter was broken up by the Marlins’ Mike Stanton hitting a solo home run in that fourth inning.

But rewind to the bottom of the first, with leadoff hitter Will Venable starting off the game. With a count of 2-0, he hit a solo home run to right field.

An out later, Cameron Maybin walked. An out after that, Orlando Hudson singled. Then Kyle Blanks doubled in both Maybin and Hudson for a 3-0 Padres lead.

Cory and the Padres cruised through the seven innings. Other than the home run, not much happened. The Padres did leave quite a few runners on base, but we had a solid lead and we’re feeling pretty good.

In the top of the eighth, the Marlins’ John Beck hit a sacrifice fly to move Florida within one run of a tie. Heath Bell came in because there were two outs, and got the final out.

Then the top of the ninth was when the craziness started. Heath Bell got two quick outs when Mike Cameron came to the plate. And. He. Hit. A. Freaking. Home. Run. I couldn’t believe it. I could not believe that he hit a solo home run to tie to game.

“You did not just do that,” I said over and over again. “You did NOT just do that.”

I was not happy. We were literally within one out of winning that stupid game and Mike came in and stole it away from us. Garrrr.

But then we got to the bottom of the ninth. Whew. Thank goodness for the bottom of the ninth.

Nick Hundley, who has been on fire since he came off the disabled list, hit a triple to lead off the inning. SOO exciting.

Then Edward Mujica, who was pitching for the Marlins, intentionally walked the next two hitters to load the bases (Logan Forsythe and Alberto Gonzalez.) We booed him, of course. I knew that it wouldn’t help him at all. Because guess who was coming to the plate? That’s right. Will Venable, the man who started off the game with a home run, was about to finish the game with another bang.

Single over the head of the right field. Nick Hundley scored. Padres win.

It was a great game. Even Heath blowing it gave us the opportunity to finish off the game with excitement. So everything turned out well in the end.

Yesterday was a great day to be a San Diego Padres fan. Thank you to the Padres organization for such a wonderful day at the ballpark.

GO PADRES!!

The Last Trevor Time Ever

Trevor Hoffman and his family walk to the infield from the bullpen.

I don’t even know where to begin. Today was incredible. It went so perfectly. I can’t even imagine what kind of emotions Trevor is going through right now. Today was a very, very special day for him, his family and friends, and all Padres fans.

At about 12:31 p.m. this afternoon, Ted Leitner started Trevor Hoffman’s retirement ceremony. Soon, “Hell’s Bells” started playing and Trevor walked out of the Padres bullpen. I had been getting slightly emotional while waiting for the ceremony to being, but once his song started playing and he walked out, I lost it. It was an amazing moment. I was shaking and crying and happy and sooo excited.

It was the last Trevor Time. Ever. It was the last time that he would walk in from that bullpen to Hell’s Bells. It was sad, but it wasn’t entirely despairing. It’s like a new chapter in his story. Yeah, he’ll never pitch in the Major Leagues again, but I don’t think we’re done seeing Trevor. He’s still going to be around and doing new and exciting things. I’m really happy for him.

Trev walked all the way to the infield with his family. I thought that was really cool because his wife and kids were never able to do that walk from the bullpen with him before.

It was an amazing ceremony. Lots of videos, lots of memories. And so many of the influential people in Trevor’s life were there, from his coaches when he was really young to teammates from his whole career. It was so cool!

Today was declared “Trevor Hoffman Day” by the Mayor of San Diego. One of the really cool things during the ceremony was the gift the Padres gave to Trevor: a 1958 Cadillac convertible. Amazing. You should have seen Trevor’s face when he got that thing. It seems like the perfect gift for him.

The number 51 was revealed next to the other retired numbers on the top of the scoreboard. It looks like it belongs there.

Trevor Hoffman's number, 51, is now officially retired from the San Diego Padres.

There were so many wonderful words spoken about Trevor, by his family members, former teammates, coaches, and fellow baseball players. It reminded me how amazingly blessed we are to have him here in San Diego. He is such a classy guy, such a role model, such an inspiration.

As the ceremony came to a close, Trevor took a turn to speak and thank everyone for the incredible day. Then it was time for the National Anthem. Oh my goodness. The Padres played a video of Ed Hoffman, Trevor’s father, singing the National Anthem in 1981. It was amazing.

The Padres really did an incredible job with this day. They made it so special for Trevor and his family. So special. Of course, this day was to honor Trevor, but they made it fun for the fans, too. They gave us posters and embossings, and then we could buy commemorative cups and shirts and hats.

The energy that was around me was amazing. It was probably because I was on the field level. I think things are a little more intense down there than the upper deck, where I usually reside. But still, it was just amazing to be in that environment, where everyone was so excited about Trevor.

It was truly a day that will never be forgotten.

Trevor, you deserved today. You have been an inspiration to many people, including me. I was so proud today to be wearing the number 51, and I’m so proud to be a Padres fan. Even through all the losses and all the trades and the way the team doesn’t generally do well, today taught me that being a Padres fan is so much more than just the performance on the field. It’s the people. It’s the athletes. It’s people like you who are good at baseball but great at being a wonderful person. Your legacy is so much bigger than your 601 saves; your legacy is the lives that you touched and the people you served.

I am so glad that I was able to be there today. I’m so glad that you are a Padre. Thank you, thank you, thank you for everything. You mean more to us then you’ll ever know.

WE LOVE YOU TREVOR!!! 

Countdown to Trevor’s Ceremony: Enjoyable Reading

I’ve written a ton of blog posts about Trevor Hoffman. A TON. (I’m even wearing a Trevor Hoffman shirt in my main blog picture <- cool, huh?) Especially after he became a free agent. I’m linking them all here, but if you don’t feel like reading all of them, there are two-must read ones, posts that I consider to be some of the best things I’ve ever written.

MUST READS:

  • Always Belong To Us – No matter where Trevor went (or was forced to go, ahem), he will always be a Padre. He will always be our All-Time Saves leader.
  • Why Trevor? – I could not believe what the front office was telling us. I was upset, confused, and thinking, how can you let someone like Trevor Hoffman go?

The rest:

I hope you were able to find one or two that interested you and helped you get ready for the weekend. For me, looking back at all these makes me so thankful that we had one of the classiest guys in the game here, in San Diego, for so many years. I’m so glad that we’re going to have him for many years to come.

One day and 13 hours!!!

GO PADRES!!!

Countdown to Trevor’s Ceremony: Introduction

For the next few days leading up to Trevor Hoffman’s Retirement Ceremony (August 21st, Petco Park, 12:30 p.m. Tickets at padres.com), I am going to be posting about my top favorite Trevor moments. Ones that impacted me personally, and ones that impacted the city of San Diego as a whole. Trevor Hoffman is one of my all-time favorite Padres, and I have so much admiration and respect for this guy. I’m beyond excited at the opportunity to be at his ceremony and really honor his incredible career.

Be sure to check back tomorrow for the first post about my favorite Trevor moments. I can’t wait.

GO TREVOR!!!

Looking Up

Last night’s game was a great one for the San Diego Padres.

We had 15 hits, which is rare. But it was so much fun to watch! Nick Hundley, who recently came off the disabled list, had three hits, two triples and a double. Two triples!! It was so great.

Then Logan Forsythe, Jesus Guzman, Kyle Blanks, Orlando Hudson and Alberto Gonzalez had two hits each. Cameron Maybin hit a solo homer in the seventh.

We actually got the early lead with two runs in the bottom of the first, and kept that lead for the rest of the game. The Mets were able to get one run in the top of the fourth, but we added one run in the bottom of that inning, two runs in the seventh, and one run in the eighth.

Cory Luebke, who started the game, threw very, very well. He had a no-hitter through 3.2 innings. He ended up only giving up three hits on one run with five strikeouts. What an outing!

In relief, Chad Qualls allowed the Mets’ only other hit in the game. Luke Gregerson and Erik Hamren threw the eighth and ninth with no problems.

It was a really good 6-1 win. We had some really solid hitting, really solid pitching. It was great to see.

 Guess what? Trevor Hoffman day is only a few days away!!!! I am sooooo excited. But I’m going to cry so bad. Just the sound of Hell’s Bells makes me freak out, so I’m pretty sure I’m going to be a mess on Sunday. But that’s okay. Trevor Hoffman is my all-time favorite Padre (besides Kevin Kouzmanoff), but more than that, he’s one of the all-time favorite Padres in San Diego. I have so much admiration and respect for Trevor, I could go on and on about how much this guy means to me.

I’m just so happy that this retirement ceremony is happening. There was a time just a few years ago where I thought Trevor and the Padres would never be on speaking terms again. Those were some bad days. But I’m so, so, thankful that we have new leaders in the front office, people who respect Trevor and all he means to San Diego, people who will give him an amazing ceremony to honor his incredible career. It’s going to be a great day to be a Padres fan.

GO PADRES!!!!!

A Tribute to Trevor

trevor-hoffman.jpg

On January 13, 2009, I wrote a tribute to Trevor Hoffman that I considered to be one of the best things I ever wrote. I actually wrote a ton of tributes. I don’t know how many of my readers from then are still around now, but for those of you who were, I’m sure you remember how upset I was that Trevor got kicked out by the front office. In fact, you even established a support group for me.

Then, things looked pretty hopeless. Trevor left and signed with the Brewers. The Padres’ front office was awful. But man, we’ve come a long way. Trevor’s back. He’s home now. He’s a Padre again. We’ve got new people in control of the team, people who actually care about the fans. We’ve got an amazing winning team on the field. We went through quite the dark period, but we have come out of the tunnel and into the light. 

Yesterday, Trevor threw out the first pitch for the Padres’ Opening Day game. It was the coolest thing ever. Trevor is finally home.

So, here’s the tribute that I wrote in that time of hopelessness. But this time, it has a new ending. This time, it ends with joy. 

“The first time I ever saw you live was June 23, 2005, at my first
Padres game. I wasn’t a Padres fan, in fact, I thought baseball was kind
of boring. I had heard of you before, who in San Diego hadn’t? You were
the only person I associated with the Padres. I don’t remember much
about that game. But you did pitch that day, in the 10th with the game
tied. You’ve always been horrible in tie games. (Note to Milwaukee:
whatever you do, do NOT put Trevor in to pitch in tie games!!) This game
was no different. You gave up the winning homer. I don’t remember
seeing you pitch, but I can say that I was there.

In 2006, I attended another game, and after that, I was hooked. One
of my best experiences involving you was your record-breaking 479th
save. It was a beautiful Sunday afternoon near the end of the season. I
was in my room with the radio cranked. My parents had their radio way
loud, too. It was so amazing to hear the call of the save, and to hear
the interview and analysis afterward. I was so happy for you that I
almost started crying. I remember wishing so much that I could be there.
I still have the newspapers from that wonderful weekend. You were my
favorite player.

I went into the 2007 season as a Padres fan. You had a great year.
There are so many stories I could share, but let’s just say that I was
super excited when you got a save, and pretty disappointed when you blew
one. The day you got #500 was very exciting for me. I didn’t get
to hear it live, but I’ve watched it a lot since. In September 2007, I
headed down to PETCO with my sister and two friends to celebrate my
birthday. We got BP balls from the groundskeeper, and when we got into
the stadium, we went towards the right field line. There you were, stretching near the visitor’s bullpen. I was so excited to see you. I was
pretty much awe-struck. When you were done stretching, you stopped by to
sign autographs. And I got it, on my BP ball. I think I squeezed in
between a bunch of people, and just stuck my hand in there. It was so
cool, and that ball is very special to me.

Game 163 hurt, badly. I was really confident in you, but you blew it.
That was truly devastating, hearing you fall apart on that field. But
the way you handled the situation, taking the blame, and giving no
excuses was just incredible.

On August 14, 2008, I finally got to see Trevor Time. In the bottom
of the 8th, the score was 3-1 Pads. My Padres got Kouzmanoff on, but I
desperately didn’t want Chase Headley to get a hit! He didn’t, and so
the game headed into the top of the 9th. One of my goals in 2008 was to
see Trevor Time. I wanted to see it before you retired. And there I was.
I had been watching you warm up in the bullpen. I could tell it was you
by the leg kick, and the way you pitch. It was incredible to watch the
Trevor Time, to hear “Hell’s Bells”. I was screaming like crazy and
taking countless pictures. You did give up a home run to Mike Cameron,
but you did it. You closed your 550th save. I am so thankful that I was
able to be there, to see it before you left.

Trevor, you are a Padre. No matter where you go, you are and always
will be a Padre. You’ve been here for 16 years. In 1998, “Hell’s Bells”
debuted and you became San Diego’s hero. Over the 16 years with us, you
collected 552 saves. You broke the all-time saves record right here in
San Diego. You got 500 and 550 here. You represented the Padres 6 times
in the All-Star game. You’ve been here for so long, done so much for
this team, and how are we supposed to say goodbye to you?

We love you. We love Trevor Time. We love your humbleness, your
humor, and the way you play the game. That front office was eager to let
you go, but we weren’t. We weren’t ready to watch you walk away. We wanted
you to stay, to end your Hall of Fame career here.

You got your 600th save with the Brewers, and you retired after two seasons with them. But you’re back, with a fresh start. You don’t feel like you need to have a one-day contract, because you’re going to be here now. You’re a part of this team again. It feels like you never left.

We love you Trevor. Thank you for not giving up on us. You have been one the best players ever to wear a Padres uniform, and we are so happy that you are back for good.”

GO PADRES!!!!