I'm pretty bad about gift-giving. With my loved ones, I usually prefer to go somewhere with them and spend time with them. This is difficult, however, when I live 1,296 miles away from my family (well, where my parents live, at least, a few of my siblings have moved out, and probably live slightly closer.
We don't visit home too much, but my in-laws offered to pay our gas to drive out to San Diego, since most of my wife's sisters will all be in town (a rare feat) for the 4th of July. Seizing the opportunity, I checked the dates of the All-Star events in San Diego, and even though we had to extend our trip a few days, we've arranged it so that we'll still be in town for the first day of FanFest.
Naturally, I called up my dad and invited him to go, and tipped him on a buy-one-get-one deal to lower the cost (originally $30 a ticket!). He bought the tickets (for him, me, and two of my siblings), so while it might not count as a Father's Day gift, it's still something, right?
There will be baseball "legends" there to sign autographs and do question and answer sessions, and for Padres fans, none will be bigger than Trevor Hoffman. Randy Jones, a former All-Star himself will be there, along with scrappy former short stop Chris Gomez. I am a big fan of both of these guys. Other guys like Kurt Bevacqua and Steve Garvey will be in attendance as well, but none that I'm more excited about than…
Yeah, you probably guessed it, Archi Cianfrocco. I've never met him before, and I'm not sure that he'll believe that I'm really as big a fan of his as I am, but I seriously can't wait. This is probably my favorite Padres-era Archi card, I might bring it to get signed.
Not all the "baseball legends" at FanFest are from the Padres organization, however, it's very Padre-dominant the first day. Of all the former players to be there, Orlando Cepeda is the only one who will be there on the first day. Knowing this (and not knowing much about him), I snatched up a pretty cheap copy of "the baby Bull's" '71 Topps card. I'm not sure what I'll say to Mr. Cepeda, but I'm excited to say that I got to meet him, even if it's just for a bit.
Even though I'm a slacker, I got my dad something for Father's Day. It'll get there a few days late, but better late than never, right? I'm hoping he reads through it quickly and then I can borrow it when I'm hack in San Diego.
I'm a big fan of Ben and Sam's almost daily podcast for Baseball Prospectus, and this book looks really interesting. They're two stat-heads who are given the opportunity to run (i.e. choose players, give input on lineup construction, defensive positioning, and in-game decisions) an independent league team. Thanks to one of my students for giving me a Barnes & Noble gift card as an end of the year teacher gift, you really saved my bacon!
Anyways, I hope all the fathers are having a good father's day. Oh, did I mention that the Padres drafted Quinn Hoffman, son of Trevor, in the 2016 MLB Draft. Looks like Quinn won't back down from his baseball scholarship to Harvard, but still a cool thing to see the Pads do (much better than drafting Johnny Manziel a few years ago, at least).