SAN DIEGO (KGTV) - Hope. The word is defined as, "A feeling of expectation and desire for a certain thing to happen."
In baseball, there is hope every spring with Opening Day. The slate is clean, the records are even, it’s a new beginning.
“We couldn’t be more excited to have our fans back with us especially given the excitement around this team,” says Padres CEO Erik Greupner.
Greupner has a big smile on his face and why shouldn't he after the Padres' run last year and all the additions made during the off-season. In San Diego’s east village there is hope again. Not just for the Padres. Sure they are the focus for the day, but this hope transcends baseball.
“I think what people want to see though; is that this is real. How is this tangible?" says San Diego Mayor Todd Gloria. "The fact that we couldn’t do this last year and we can this year is proof of the progress.”
Progress that began with a partnership between the City of San Diego, the Padres, and you with the Petco Park Superstation. That’s where hope began and continues for so many in need. Erik Tesmer who co-owns Basic Pizza a block from Petco Park feels that hope once again.
“Yes, it’s lifesaving for us," says Tesmer. "We had some moments we didn’t think we would make it through.”
Basic Pizza has been a game day tradition for Padres fans for 15 years. But the life and the energy that drives this business was missing. Until now.
“The energy in downtown is dependent on a lot of things that are going on," adds Tesmer. “The Padres are the start of that. New energy in downtown that I look forward to.”
Same for Brant Crenshaw who co-ownsSocial Tap. His restaurant is a stone’s throw from Petco. His hope is to pick up where the Padres left off last year.
“Fans couldn’t get into the stadium and we were the closest place to it," says Crenshaw. "You could damn near hear the crack of the bat and just be part of the energy without being in the stadium. So, we’re definitely planning on having a big rush for that.
Hope is a good thing. And much like the Padres, we are all hoping for better days to come, and ultimately celebrations with friends.
“We’re all just craving some normalcy," says Gloria with a smile. "And that will be achieved, but to have greatness within our grasps with this incredible team, it’s a lot of hope at a time when we need it.”