Way back in 2012 the Padres' Head Groundskeeper Luke Yoder planted a vegetable garden beneath the batter's eye and in the home team's bullpen. It sounded like a weird place for a garden at the time, and if I'm being perfectly honest still does now. But it proved to be a fun hobby for the groundskeepers who were probably losing their collective minds from mowing the grass a few times a day for no particular reason. I'll even admit I've grown to enjoy looking at Yoder's tweets about his crop.
The garden serves a few useful purposes too. Petco Park's head chef regularly makes salsa from the peppers when they are in season and uses other vegetables to garnish the plates of more unhealthy ballpark fare. The players even seemed to enjoy the garden's accessibility. The bullpen pitchers often challenge each other to eat spicy peppers to entertain themselves in the early innings before the starting pitcher is pulled and they need to get down to business.
I tell you all of this because apparently over the summer the San Francisco Giants had President Obama announce that they were going to build a 3,000 square foot organic vegetable garden of their own beyond centerfield. I didn't read about it until last week. I haven't figured out yet why the President is in the business of making announcements for the Giants, but we should get him to announce some Padres giveaway items in the near future.
I asked Luke Yoder how the Padres planned to compete with a garden of that size:
After I got his response via Twitter I got around to reading some more articles on the proposed garden.
President Obama joked on Monday that "It's OK to have a hot dog once in a while" after announcing that the first edible garden at a "major American sports facility" will open next season at AT&T Park in San Francisco.
The first edible garden in a major American sports facility? You don't say...
All the articles I've read claim the Giants will have the first garden. Do they mean the first organic garden? I tweeted a follow up question to Yoder to ask him if his garden is organic. Is Petco Park not considered a major American sports facility? Otherwise I'm not sure how they can claim to have the first vegetable garden in a sports facility when the Padres have had one for two years. Maybe no one took notice since we didn't get the president involved.
#SFGiants are the 1st MLB team to construct an organic, edible garden. Currently under construction and will be completed later this spring— San Francisco Giants (@SFGiants) March 26, 2014
UPDATE [Note by jbox, 03/27/14 8:32 AM PDT ] :
Welp, the Giants apologized and the whole thing comes to a very civil end, for now.
We weren’t aware of the Padres garden and are thrilled that another organization has such a wonderful space. Here's to a HEALTHY 2014— San Francisco Giants (@SFGiants) March 27, 2014