San Diego Padres Release
SAN DIEGO – The San Diego Padres today announced Jack McKeon has been elected to the Padres Hall of Fame, the lone member of the class of 2017. The former Padres manager and general manager will be inducted on Saturday, August 19, 2017, in a special pregame ceremony ahead of that night’s game against the Washington Nationals. The election was made by the Padres front office in collaboration with the San Diego chapter of the Baseball Writers’ Association of America (BBWAA) and local sports media.
“The Padres Hall of Fame is dedicated to the players, executives and broadcasters who have impacted the club in ways that left an indelible mark, often at the most pivotal moments in Padres history,” said Padres Executive Chairman Ron Fowler. “By that definition, ‘Trader’ Jack McKeon is beyond deserving of his election and upcoming induction into the Padres Hall of Fame. As the architect of a team that won this organization’s first National League pennant, a general manager/manager hybrid, and a larger-than-life personality, McKeon had a remarkable tenure in San Diego.”
McKeon will be honored for his 11 seasons as general manager of the Padres (1980-90), including the parts of three seasons he spent in the dual role of GM and manager (1988-90). Dubbed “Trader Jack” for his renowned ability to instigate and mediate transactions, McKeon was 49-years-old when he began his role as general manager. McKeon made a multitude of the trades and signings that helped lead to the club’s 1984 National League title, including a 11-player trade with the St. Louis Cardinals. His most notable trade acquisitions included Garry Templeton, Terry Kennedy, Graig Nettles, Carmelo Martinez and Dave Dravecky. McKeon also signed Steve Garvey and Goose Gossage as free agents, and was responsible for drafting Tony Gwynn and Kevin McReynolds, as well as acquiring Alan Wiggins in the Rule 5 Draft.
During the 1988 season, with the Padres record sitting at 16-30, McKeon assumed the managerial title, becoming the 12th manager in franchise history. For parts of three seasons, he led the Padres to 193 victories, boasting a .541 winning percentage. Following his career in the Padres organization, McKeon went on to manage the Cincinnati Reds and Florida Marlins, spending four seasons with each club. In 2003, McKeon led the Florida Marlins to their second World Series title. In his 16-year management career, McKeon accrued a record of 1051-990, and he received National League Manager of the Year accolades in 1999 and 2003. McKeon has penned two books, Jack of All Trades and I’m Just Getting Started, and on May 26, 2015, the New Jersey native was named to the Irish American Baseball Hall of Fame.
“Speaking on behalf of the San Diego chapter of the BBWAA, I am delighted that the Padres have chosen to honor ‘Trader’ Jack McKeon this summer,” said Scott Miller, chairman of the San Diego chapter of the Baseball Writers’ Association of America. “Not only was he instrumental in creating one of the seminal moments in club history in his role as GM of the 1984 World Series team, he was a classic, crusty, old-school baseball man who operated in a haze of cigar smoke, pulled the trigger on trades at all hours of the day and night and stoked the imagination and passion of Padres fans everywhere. A natural showman, I cannot think of another GM who hosted his own radio show before an enthusiastic live audience of baseball fans during the Hot Stove season. In the annals of Padres history, Jack McKeon stands tall as an all-timer.”
McKeon and members of his family are expected to be in attendance as he becomes the 14th person to be enshrined in the Padres Hall of Fame, which was created to honor the club’s 30th anniversary in 1999. He joins (in order of induction) Randy Jones (1999), Nate Colbert (1999), Ray Kroc (1999), Dave Winfield (2000), Jerry Coleman (2001), Buzzie Bavasi (2001), Tony Gwynn (2002), Dick Williams (2009), Trevor Hoffman (2014), Benito Santiago (2015), Garry Templeton (2015), Ken Caminiti (2016) and Ted Williams (2016).
The new Padres Hall of Fame presented by Sony opened at Petco Park in July 2016 on K Street behind the left field seating area. The exhibit showcases the full history, not only of the San Diego Padres, but also of baseball in San Diego. Its many features include an 80-foot-long in-depth timeline, starting with baseball in San Diego in the era before the Padres (1871-1935), moving into the Pacific Coast League Padres (1936-68), and finally transitioning into the Major League Padres (1969-present). Visitors also experience interactive displays and individual tributes to the players, broadcasters and executives who have made a tremendous impact on baseball in San Diego.
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