SEATTLE (AP) — Learning that Padres Hall of Famer Tony Gwynn had died completely changed Chris Young's outlook on pitching against his former team.
"I think any fun about pitching against them disappeared this morning with the news of Tony passing," the Mariners' right-hander said after Seattle's 5-1 win over San Diego on Monday night.
"My condolences go out to his family, the Padres organization, the city of San Diego. He meant a lot to everyone there and I'm grateful I had the opportunity to work with him and get to know him."
The loss capped a somber day for the Padres organization. Gwynn, 54, died Monday morning of oral cancer, a disease he attributed to years of chewing tobacco.
"Even though we're away from San Diego I think the Mariners did a good job of putting Tony out there," Padres manager Bud Black said.
Kyle Seager hit a three-run homer in the first inning, Brad Miller added a solo shot, and Young threw six shutout innings against his former team. San Diego was on the verge of being shut out by Young (6-4) and a pair of relievers until Carlos Quentin hit a solo homer leading off the ninth.
But Gwynn was on everyone's mind at Safeco Field. Seattle honored Gwynn with a video tribute and moment of silence before the game and put a '19' on the dirt in the hole between the shortstop and third baseman. Gwynn called that the "5.5 hole" and many of his 3,141 hits went through it.
San Diego added black armbands to its uniform in honor of Gwynn, and his No. 19 jersey hung in the Padres dugout. His jersey also was scattered among fans in attendance.
"He is the city of San Diego. You talk Padres baseball, Tony Gwynn is everything there," Young said.
Seager's homer came on a 3-0 pitch from San Diego starter Tyson Ross (6-6). Coming off a 4-for-4 performance on Sunday, Seager was given the green light and hit his 10th homer of the season. Miller followed with a solo homer an inning later.
Continue reading this story on the...