Since we previously touched base, 2020 has taken yet another turn. The killing last month of George Floyd, an unarmed black man, by Derek Chauvin, a Minneapolis policeman, sparked outrage and protests throughout the world.
On #PadresTwitter, Quincy had this to say:
More on this later, along with reactions from the baseball community, but first some introductions.
Quincy was born in Baltimore and grew up in Southeast San Diego. His parents raised him as a Padres fan.
“My next door neighbor Greg, who was my best friend, [his family] had season tickets. So I always went to the games with him or my parents.
I’ve got nothing but great memories as a kid. Greg … who is white … till this day, we still laugh and talk about all the great times we had.My favorite player was TG of course and so was his.
We used to be running around the ballpark, and his dad would have to go looking for us. One time, he lost us. Actually, we lost him, and the stadium security ended up finding us. 😂😂“
Brian cheers on the Padres from his home in Northeast Texas. Although his father and younger brother like to watch baseball with him, no one else in his family is a Padres fan.
“So my fan story starts with my dad asking me who I was rooting for in the 1998 World Series. I picked the Padres, and I just kind of stuck with them.
It was very hard to follow the team in Texas during this time but I would “watch” the scoreboard from my parents computer.”
Brian has never been to a game in San Diego but has seen them play the Texas Rangers in Dallas, most recently in 2018.
“I had a vacation scheduled to see the Padres in Peoria this spring but 2020 had different plans.”
Also, what’s up with his allegiance to Wil Myers? I asked him if he’s still #WilFaithful?
“Wil Myers Apologists, Inc. was just a joke I had in my bio because of the bickering during his All Star season. It kind of morphed into its own little thing.
I’m still ‘Wil Faithful’ to the point that I’m really mad that he’s not going to get that first 20 million dollars he was due to receive this year for his services.”
Unlike Quincy and Brian, Brandon did not come from a family of baseball fans. But he played pickup ball at a park as a kid and was also on the baseball team for his senior year at Sweetwater High School.
Brandon has lived in National City his entire life and grew up enjoying Tony Gwynn, Trevor Hoffman, and Jake Peavy as his favorite players.
As for these days …
“Fernando Tatís Jr.: Dude is dripping with talent & swag. He is the face of the Padres franchise for years to come.
Manny Machado: When the news spread on social media last year that the Padres would sign Machado to a long-term contract, I was absolutely overjoyed. Machado and Tatís will be the best 3B/SS duo in the league for years to come.”
On June 2, a collective action took place on social media to protest racism and police brutality. Many people and organizations posted black squares on Twitter, Instagram, and other platforms. In connection to this and other #BlackLivesMatter postings, several Padres players spoke out including Taylor Trammell, Tommy Pham, and Cal Quantrill.
“I agree with Taylor Trammell and Tommy Pham. We need to uplift each other. We have been fighting for too long but the thing is that we are tired of fighting. We want to see some resolutions.”
“I love both of the statements that came from Trammell and Pham.
Taylor spoke in a way that was outward to other communities while Tommy spoke of community-building within our own race.
But in the end, it’s not up to them to make the difference. The other players on the team have to be willing to take that next step.
The only white Padre I saw make a statement was Cal Quantrill. If he’s the only one, I’m glad that at least one person’s heart was touched by the video of George Floyd’s death. I’d love to see more guys out there making statements, and if they have, I’m sorry I missed it.
The thing is one white guy making a difference isn’t enough. If I knew the exact number of Cal Quantrill’s on a baseball team that would end racism, I’d be a Nobel Peace Prize winner.
But it can’t be just one white guy, three black guys and to a certain extent, the darker Latin players telling you how things are different in America and the other half not listening.”
“My reaction: I’m all for it. There needs to be change, and we really have to come together – not just for black/African Americans but for everyone.
It’s gonna be a tough challenge but it can be possible.
Black Lives Matter.”
I asked Brandon about his social media break.
“I felt like I needed it … all the negative stuff I was seeing on my timeline … the infighting within some of #PadresTwitter over the past few months … I just needed to get away for a bit.”
I also checked in with Quincy to get his thoughts as to whether he thinks any significant change will come out of the protests.
“I think people are fed up.
I believe things have changed already. The Confederate flag taking down in the military, officers getting EXPOSED for their wrongdoings faster than regular…they are opening up past cases that they have forgotten about.
So I think a change is coming. I just pray it don’t stop.
Mostly here to promote fun baseball! My focus is on our experiences as fans and shared connections in the baseball community. I also produce content for #PadresTwitter, including vlogs and event coverage. Find me on Twitter (@PadresGeekster) and IG (PadresGeekster).