|The San Diego Padres began play in 1969 and finished last in the six-team NL West their first six seasons. In their first 15 years the Padres put together only one winning season. Long-time baseball fan Ray Kroc, builder of the McDonalds' fast food empire, purchased the team in 1974. |
Pitcher Randy Jones led the league with a 2.24 ERA and won 20 games in 1975 as the Padres posted a winning percentage over .400 for the first time ever. The next season, Jones won the Cy Young by winning a league leading 22 games.
Dave Winfield arrived as a rookie in 1973, Rollie Fingers signed as a free agent in 1977 and Ozzie Smith was installed at shortstop in 1978. Veteran pitcher Gaylord Perry acquired from Texas, posted a 21-6 record and gave the Padres its 2nd Cy Young winner.
The 1978 season was the Padres first-ever winning season. But then owner Ray Kroc passed away, all of the above stars were gone and it took the Padres six more years to record their second winning season - they captured the NL pennant in 1984. Baseballhistorian.com All-Rights Reserved - The History of Baseball
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