Chris James was the first of six players born on October 4 to play for the Padres. An outfielder and third baseman by trade, he spent a little over half of a season in San Diego, coming over in the June, 1989, trade that sent John Kruk and Randy Ready to Philadelphia, then heading to Cleveland at year's end with Carlos Baerga and Sandy Alomar, Jr. for Joe Carter. In his brief time in brown, Craig James' now-54-year-old brother hit .264/ .314/ .429 with 13 doubles, a pair of triples, and 11 home runs in 303 at-bats.
The next Padre born on this day is reliever Tim Mauser, who turns 50. He was acquired in another trade with Philadelphia, one that saw him and Roger Mason switch clubhouses in the middle of a series between the two teams. The righty was exceptional for the Friars that year and the next, but faltered in 1995 with both the Padres and their AAA affiliate; he was out of baseball after eight games with the Rangers' AAA team in 1996.
Adam Riggs, who turns 44 today, came to the Padres as a 28-year-old rookie in 2001, four years removed from his only previous major league experience, nine games with the Dodgers. Riggs got into a dozen games for San Diego, mostly at second base. He hit .194/ .237/ .222 in 36 at-bats, then spent a year in the Tigers' system before closing out his career with 40 games for the Angels in 2003 and '04.
Joe Thatcher spent the bulk of his career as San Diego's go-to lefty out of the pen. He arrived in the July, 2007, trade with Milwaukee that added by subtracting Scott Linebrink. Six years and six days later Thatch was sent to Arizona with Matt Stites for Ian Kennedy. In that time he put up a 3.18 ERA in 198.1 innings spread over 287 appearances, striking out 9.5 batters every nine innings. He bounced from Arizona to Anaheim, and then Houston before spending last season as a 34-year-old in AAA with the Dodgers and Cubs' organizations.
One year younger than Thatcher, Anthony Keith Gwynn Junior became his teammate in 2009. After parts of three seasons with Milwaukee, Li'l Tony was acquired by his dad's team for Jody Gerut. TGJ provided exceptional defense in center field for two seasons, but his hitting was more reminiscent of his uncle Chris. Junior went on to the Dodgers for 2011 and '12, then played his last 80 major league games in 2014 with the Phillies, for whom he wore his father's number 19. He's now back with the Dodgers' organization, providing his familiar voice to their pre- and post-game shows.
The most recent October 4 baby to play for the Padres is Casey Kelly, who turns 27 today. A huge prospect at the time he was acquired from Boston in the Adrian Gonzalez trade, Kelly battled myriad arm injuries before being sent to the Braves for Christian Bethancourt after the 2015 season. He got into 10 games for Atlanta this year, one more than he pitched in his time with the Padres in 2012 and '15. One of those 10 games was on the road in San Diego, where I and most of the other fans in attendance welcomed him back with applause.