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Happy Golden Birthday, GLB

MLB: Philadelphia Phillies at San Diego Padres Jake Roth-USA TODAY Sports

Khalil Greene got spotted at the Rock Bottom Brewery over the weekend by my wife’s excited cousin, Sara. He was with a hot blonde girl. Sara waited until blondie got up to use the rest room and she made her move, getting his autograph on a coaster. I think this somehow bodes well for the Padres this season.

Entitled “Khalil at Rock Bottom,” the paragraph above constituted the very first blog post in Gaslamp Ball history, written by Dex. At the time, the blog was called “Padres Fans Since ‘76” and it was hosted on Blogspot. That was 14 years ago today.

Dex - alongside his buddies jbox, kev, and Jonny Dub - would soon be invited to join a fledgling group of bloggers at SportsBlog Inc., and over the next several years they would work to bring Padres fans together on the internet. PFS76 became Gaslamp Ball, and SportsBlog Inc. would eventually become SB*Nation, and a little community of nerdy ass Padres fans would blossom.

It wasn’t until 2009 that I was introduced to this community, happening upon Gaslamp Ball while doing a little Padres-related Google search. I read blog post after blog post, and after a little while started commenting on the posts and in the game threads. At some point I started writing fanposts - when Dex or jbox would forget or be late with a game thread - just so I’d have somewhere to “hang out” while watching Padres games at home on my couch. By the grace of Winfield’s Ghost, in 2011 Dex and jbox invited me to put up official Game Threads, so they could focus their energies on other blog posts. Thus I proudly became the first outside of the Core Four to have my name on the Gaslamp Ball masthead.

Though they have all parted ways with Gaslamp Ball over time, I’ll always be grateful to those guys for letting me be a small part of what they had started all those years ago, and even moreso for eventually leaving it in my hands. It continues to be one of the best things that has ever happened to me. And while I’ll never be able to live up to them, I’m glad to have an amazing team (Joe Lanek, SD Hat Guy, darklighter, roydjt, daveysapien, and sbclsn), to help me keep Gaslamp Ball afloat into its teen years and continue to foster this place for Padres fans to gather and talk about the team we all love.

It sometimes feels a little strange how sentimental I get about this blog, but I’ve met many of the best people I know, including some of my dearest friends and the love of my life, through GLB so it will forever be a part of me. To everyone reading this, thank you for just being here and for making this place so much more than a blog. I can’t wait to celebrate a World Series win with you all someday.