Friday Night Lights is back after a spring break hiatus!
There is no AAA game tonight, so we have one game on the docket with the Cubs (4-4-1) at the Padres (0-8-1).
First pitch is at 7:00 p.m. at Highlands North.
It’s Scott Odom Bobblehead Night tonight.
The first 100 fans in attendance will receive a free bobblehead of SCLL President Scott Odom, with his catchphrase “Alright, Alright!” inscribed on the bobblehead.
We encourage you to get there early to ensure your bobblehead.
Before we get to the game preview, a few updates at the midway point of the season.
The Majors team stats (ERA, runs per game, home runs) have been updated on the web site.
Every team has now played 9 games of their 17 game schedule.
Congratulations to the team leaders below through the 1st half of the season!
Runs Scored Per Game – 1. Tigers 8.33, 2. Diamondbacks 7.56, 3. Yankees 6.67
ERA – 1. Giants 3.00, 2. Pirates 3.56, 3. Reds 3.56
Team Home Runs Hit – 1. Giants 5, 2. Pirates 3, Padres 3
Team Home Runs Allowed – Tied for 1st - Giants, Reds, Astros, Pirates with 0
Individual Home Run Leaders – 1. Joey Lorenzini (Giants) and Cole Roark (Pirates) 3, 2. Jaquari Hughes (Giants) and Richard Lagrill (Padres) 2
Home Runs hit through 9 games in 2017 with Mako Bats – 50
Home Runs hit through 9 games in 2018 – 15
Home Runs are down 70% this year.
Majors will be using one playoff bracket this season for all 12 teams (no American and National Leagues, it is just one league).
It will be a double elimination tournament and the top 4 seeds will receive byes.
There will be no reseeding and the bracket is the bracket, just like March Madness.
The bracket for the Majors, AAA, and AA playoffs will be released soon and posted to the web site.
Districts and Super Bowl information will be posted soon, stay tuned!
And finally before we get to the FNL feature matchup, we want to thank San Carlos Orthodontics and Zoom Video Communications for being sponsors of SCLL!
Our FNL game features a rematch of the 1984 National League Championship Series between the Cubs and Padres.
One of the great postseason series of all time, the Padres were the first team to rally from a 2-0 deficit as they won their final 3 games at home to advance to the World Series.
It was the last year MLB had a Best of 5 NLCS and ALCS…the following year they would permanently move to a Best of 7 format.
We wrote a preview article back in February on the Majors Padres and the city of San Diego’s futility with sports.
In 111 seasons of football, baseball and basketball, San Diego has exactly ZERO championships.
How could my favorite city, the city with the best fish tacos and guacamole, have zero championships?
We hoped the preview article would lead the Padres to the Majors Championship, but with zero wins through 9 games, it jinxed them.
Well tonight this Friday Night Lights Preview will reverse the curse of the former preview by invoking the memory of those 1984 Padres, one of baseball’s great forgotten teams.
The Padres lost the 84 World Series to the Detroit Tigers, one of the great teams of all time, and have thus become just a footnote in history.
But this was one of the most entertaining and underrated teams of all time. Here are just a few of the storylines from that 84 Padres team.
• Bruce Bochy, Tim Flannery and Dave Dravecky were on that team, all playing prominent roles in the Giants organization in future years.
• OF Kevin McReynolds was on that San Diego team and hit 20 HR’s that year. McReynolds started a chain of events that would play a big hand in the Giants 1987 and 1989 seasons, even though he was on neither team. In December 1986 McReynolds was traded from the Padres to the Mets for Kevin Mitchell. And then in July 1987 Mitchell, Dravecky and Craig Lefferts were traded from the Padres to the Giants in a rip-off trade, all three having a huge hand in the Giants winning the 87 division and making the 89 World Series.
• Steve Garvey hit the most famous home run in San Diego history, a walkoff shot off Lee Smith in the bottom of the 9th to tie the NLCS at 2-2. The Padres would win Game 5 the next day and advance to the World Series. The San Diego Union Tribune ranked the Top 52 San Diego sports moments in history in 2016, and the Garvey HR was voted #1 (we didn’t realize there were 52 great moments in San Diego sports history, but we will take their word for it).
• The greatest brawl in MLB history happened on August 12th, 1984 between the Padres and Braves.
The first pitch of the game by Atlanta’s Pasqual Perez hit San Diego’s Alan Wiggins in the back. The Padres subsequently threw at Perez all 4 times he came to bat.
This YouTube clip is the 3rd and final major brawl in this game (there were several mini-brawls as well) with 13 players getting ejected.
• The Padres had a bunch of interesting characters on this team. My personal favorite was pitcher Eric Show, who won 15 games for the Padres in 84. One year later Show would be on the mound at Riverfront Stadium in Cincinnati when he gave up hit number 4193 to Pete Rose, which broke the MLB record of Ty Cobb. While a celebration ensued for the next 20 minutes, Show just sat there on the mound. A bizarre scene that not only angered Reds players and fans, but alienated his own teammates. Show is still the Padres all time wins leader with exactly 100 wins. 9 years later in 1994 he would pass away of a drug overdose. This NY Times article is a great read on the tortured life of Eric Show and the ESPN article below that is longer but also a good one.
This article does not endorse political candidates and it does not endorse teams.
But it does endorse the Majors Padres getting their first win of the season.
And that first win comes tonight.
With the spirit and karma of the 1984 Padres watching over this Friday Night Lights Game, we will make our first prediction in the history of this column.
Padres 6-3 over the Cubs…same score as Game 5 of the 1984 NLCS.
And if the Padres don’t win tonight…free fish tacos for everyone!!!
See you tonight at FNL.