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Demolition of building during Petco Park construction

Clive Brunskill

Fox Sports San Diego recently aired an episode of Spotlight about the building of Petco Park.  The show was really well done and I hope they replay it a few more times so everyone gets a chance to see it.  They managed to interview all the key figures involved in building "a ballpark for San Diego".  They even somehow lured former Padres owner John Moores out of his reclusive lifestyle to talk about his achievement.

I'm pretty familiar with the story of how Petco Park came to be, so I primarily watched this show in hopes of finding footage of a moment that tickled my fancy back in the day.  If I remember correctly they showed the demolition of a building live on Cox Channel 4 and Dex even went downtown with my roommate to watch it happen in person.  Long before Miley Cyrus made demolition sexy, John Moores was swinging his a wrecking ball of his own.

I'll let my younger self set the scene:

Video: Petco Park's Inaugural Season - Gaslamp Ball

They painted a Padres catcher on the side of the building and painted a wrecking ball to look like a lopsided baseball. You can see it at about the 4:59 mark. The plan was to swing the wrecking ball so that it would land in the catcher's mitt until the building collapsed under a barrage of fireworks.

What happened was the crew didn't first measure where the ball would actually make contact with the wall. So when fans were invited down to the East Village to watch and the wrecking ball was released it hit the catcher repeatedly over and over again right in the crotch.


The allure of a good nut shot is timeless.  Ever since the original live broadcast, the scene has always been edited out.  It feels really good to be reunited again after all this time. When John Moores' gave the city of San Diego an exiting nut shot by taking his estimated $200 million cut of the Padres' Fox Sports money after the sale of the team, it wasn't quite as funny.