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VIDEO: Tony Gwynn Jr. gets standing ovation in Philly in first at-bat since his father’s death

Jun 24, 2014, 11:22 PM EDT

tony gwynn jr. getty Getty Images

Phillies backup outfielder Tony Gwynn Jr. was activated from Major League Baseball’s bereavement list on Tuesday afternoon and made an appearance as a pinch-hitter in the eighth inning of Tuesday night’s 7-4 victory over the Marlins. It was his first at-bat since burying his Hall of Fame father last week in San Diego, and the fans left at Citizens Bank Park made it a beautiful, genuine moment

Props to Marlins catcher Jarrod Saltalamacchia for making that long visit to the mound.

Matt Gelb of the Philadelphia Inquirer caught up with Gwynn in the clubhouse afterward

  1. renaado - Jun 24, 2014 at 11:27 PM

    Truly a moment to remember.

  2. mrpinkca - Jun 24, 2014 at 11:33 PM

    Most days, I really enjoy crapping on Phillies “phans”. This is not one of those days. Well done Philadelphians. Well done.

  3. ripwarrior - Jun 24, 2014 at 11:35 PM

    Craig is beside himself

  4. aphillieated - Jun 24, 2014 at 11:37 PM

    I wish I had a dad 😦

  5. yahmule - Jun 24, 2014 at 11:42 PM

    Man, I would have had a tough time hitting after that. Very nice gesture by the Phillie fans.

    • historiophiliac - Jun 25, 2014 at 12:21 AM

      And Salty. Some unwritten rules are okay.

    • ch0psuey - Jun 25, 2014 at 12:53 AM

      Agree, my head would be all over the place. Nicely done by the Fans there.

  6. pkswally024 - Jun 24, 2014 at 11:58 PM

    Great moment. Even greater gesture. Growing up going to games at the vet every Sunday I was lucky enough to meet Tony and some of the greats like the wizard and larkin. It’s amazing how much one ball player can mean to so many people. When you are not only great but play the game “the right way”.

  7. banksatdixie - Jun 25, 2014 at 12:04 AM

    Nice work, Phillies fans. Pretty cool.

  8. mlbfan8898 - Jun 25, 2014 at 12:15 AM

    Just another example why baseball is the best sport with the greatest fans….period

    • moogro - Jun 25, 2014 at 1:10 AM

      There so much love in Baseball and Hockey. Penultimate is where you are standing my child, thank you.

  9. nothanksimdriving123 - Jun 25, 2014 at 2:02 AM

    The headlines suggest the ovation was for Gwynn Jr., but I got the impression fans were expressing their feelings about his father in the only way available. Either way, quite nice.

    • maddog11896 - Jun 29, 2014 at 5:00 AM


  10. maddog11896 - Jun 25, 2014 at 2:37 AM

    As I said in a post a few weeks back, I was at Gwynn Jr’s debut at home as a Brewer, and I remember Tony Sr. was there. He was sitting in the owners seats with Mark Attanasio as he watched anxiously. I’ll never forget the grin he had when Jr. came up to the plate. He struck out, but I don’t think Tony Gwynn Sr. could have been any prouder.

  11. joeyb3878 - Jun 25, 2014 at 4:00 AM

    Philly fans are an extremely passionate fan base. They are brutally honest and can be difficult at times which constantly has them under a microscope but that passion swings both ways and it is good to see the national media an example of that tonight as they honored Tony Gwynn Jr and his father….. Much respect to Saltalamacchia for going out to the mound along with the home plate ump taking the time to brush the plate to allow the fans an extended standing ovation.

  12. sophiethegreatdane - Jun 25, 2014 at 6:56 AM

    I spent three years commuting to Philly via train from Baltimore, back when I was working at UPenn. I got to know the city pretty well for someone who has never lived there. The experience was wonderful, and I have nothing but fond memories and kind words for the city and it’s people. This video doesn’t surprise me at all, and I’m glad folks get to see the real Philly fans here.

    And what a great moment it was! Very touching.

    • joan719 - Jun 28, 2014 at 1:28 AM

      Agree, Sophie, the city is great and its people even better. My son graduated dual degree from UPenn and Wharton, and I loved coming down to the city from Connecticut every chance I could.

  13. Paul White - Jun 25, 2014 at 7:52 AM

    Kudos Phillies fans. And Salty as well…love that guy, always a class act.

  14. djwhite33 - Jun 25, 2014 at 9:18 AM

    Another reason why I love sport so much.

  15. stlouis1baseball - Jun 25, 2014 at 11:30 AM

    Well done Philadelphia! Well done.

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