How the Padres have Embraced the Military

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How the Padres have Embraced the Military

- Well Tom, thank you so much for joining me. Happy 4th of July to you.

- Thanks, Lisa. Same to you. Great-- great week to celebrate America in San Diego.

- Absolutely. And thinking of San Diego, you immediately think of the amazing military presence we have here. And we know the Padres do a lot for our military. Why was that so important for this organization to reach out to the military?

- I think we take our cue from San Diego. No city in America has a larger military footprint, so we just take our cue from our city. And for 20 years, we've become the team of the military and do more than other sports teams out there. And we're really proud to do it the right way, authentically, and continue to re-invent ways to connect with the military.

- So what are some of the events that happen throughout the year that the Padres put on for the military?

- Well, I mean, everyone's familiar most with our Military Sundays here-- the players wearing the camo uniforms-- again, first team to do that. The military recruits, the Marine recruits up in right field by the hundreds. A lot of people didn't know this, but that's the first time those Marines are in uniform in public. They'll graduate the Friday following our Sunday Marine Recruit Days.

But, you know, you get goose bumps. Even when it's a warm day at Petco, you get goose bumps. Seeing those Marines serve, knowing they're about to go and-- and again, put their lives on the line to give us the freedoms we enjoy. You know, our players have a unique respect for guys that wear, you know, a different kind of uniform. Not-- not representing your city, but representing the country. And that's gone a long way over the years.

- Absolutely. And like you said, you get chills when you see all the military members and their families here at Petco Park. Do you have a favorite event that you guys throw throughout the year with the military that you enjoy?

- You know, the new event when we have our alumni, led by Randy Jones, take on the Marines or the Navy on the base. That's a fun, you know, competitive softball game.

LISA: Oh yeah, we were there for that.

- The unique respect that those two groups have for each other, you know, the highest achieving the athletes and again, the men and women that put their lives on the line, so it's neat to see that mutual respect there.

- And you say it's an authentic connection. Do you think part of it isn't just bringing the military members here but it also creates an awareness? And I imagine some young kids sitting in the stands, and they get to see the military members. Is that part of your goal as well as to bring some awareness to the military?

- Yeah, absolutely. I mean, you can't help but have respect for when you see the lineup. You know, every Sunday when we have nine members of the military community take the field with the Padres, you know, that's special. And like to your point, the kids going to ask their parents, you know, what's going on there?

All those different ways we can shine a spotlight on these men and women that serve and again, help make America a great country, and this week of 4th of July we celebrate it even more.

- Absolutely. Well thank you for your time. And It really is incredible to see what the Padres do for our military, especially here in San Diego. So thank you again.

- Thanks, Lisa. Appreciate it.