Mr Padre

Anthony Keith "Tony" Gwynn, Sr. (May 9, 1960 – June 16, 2014), nicknamed Mr. Padre and Captain Video, was an American professional baseball right fielder who played 20 seasons (1982–2001) in Major League Baseball (MLB) for the San Diego Padres. The left-handed hitting Gwynn won eight batting titles in his career, tied for the second-most in MLB history. He is considered one of the best and most consistent hitters in baseball history. He was an 18-time All-Star, recognized for his skills both on offense and defense with seven Silver Slugger Awards and five Gold Glove Awards. He was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 2007, his first year of eligibility. Gwynn attended college at San Diego State University (SDSU), where he played both college baseball and college basketball for the San Diego State Aztecs. He was selected by the Padres in the third round of the 1981 MLB Draft as the 58th overall pick. Gwynn played in the only two World Series appearances in San Diego's franchise history. He had a .338 career batting average and never hit below .309 in any full season. Gwynn accumulated 3,141 career hits as a contact hitter. Following his retirement, the Padres retired his jersey number 19 in 2004. He served as head baseball coach for the Aztecs. Gwynn died on June 16, 2014, after battling salivary gland cancer. (John Nelson)
Years ago when I was a photographer in the San Diego area I got to spend an afternoon with one of the great MLB hitters of all time, Hall-of-Famer Tony Gywnn and his family in their Poway, Calif. home. He didn’t just have talent he was was an amazing student of the game and spent extra  hours at batting practice and pioneered the use of video in perfecting his swing and honing his craft. When reading the many obituaries you’ll find that he was classy guy, down to earth and loved by  baseball fans. RIP Mr Padre.
click on the photo to see a couple more photos from that afternoon.

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