Tony Gwynn won eight batting titles, five Gold Gloves, and led the San Diego Padres to two World Series appearances.
Former major league all-star and San Diego State All-American Tony Gwynn will serve as a volunteer coach during the 2002 season as he prepares to take over the head coaching duties in June. Gwynn was named to head up the Aztec program last fall after Jim Dietz announced that the 2002 season would be his final campaign at San Diego State.
The then 41-year-old Gwynn concluded a 20-year career with the San Diego Padres last October as one of only 16 players (including four National Leaguers) to have played at least 20 seasons and spent their entire career with one team.
A native of Long Beach, Calif., Gwynn attended Long Beach Poly High before arriving at SDSU where he played both baseball and basketball.
Primarily a left fielder and designated hitter, He was a two-time All-American as an outfielder after leading the Aztecs in hitting his final two seasons. His .398 career batting average is the best for an SDSU player since the school began Division I competition in 1981.
In 1981, Tony Gwynn batted .416 with 11 homes runs and 62 runs batted in. His RBI total that season still ranks among the top 10 on the Aztec single-season record list. He was named to the All-Western Athletic conference first team as well as an NCAA All-American that year.
In addition to three years of baseball, Tony Gwynn was also a point guard for the Aztec basketball team for four seasons and was named to the All-Western Athletic Conference twice. He tied the school record for assists in a game with 18 against UNLV in 1980. He also still holds the SDSU records for assists in a season (221) and career (590), and averaged 5.5 assists per game over the course of his career.
Drafted on the same day in 1981 by both the Padres (fourth round) and basketball’s San Diego Clippers (10th round), Gwynn opted for baseball. He first appeared with the big league club a year later and became a permanent fixture in right field at Qualcomm Stadium, and his accomplishments with a bat are well renowned.
Gwynn finished with a major league career batting average of .338 after hitting .347 as a minor league player. He hit above the .300 mark for 18 consecutive seasons, and in doing so surpassed Honus Wagner’s record set from 1897-1913. He joined the 3,000 hit club in 1999 and his total of 3,137 ranks 16th all time.
During his illustrious pro career, Gwynn won eight National League batting titles and was an all star on 15 occasions. He was named to The Sporting News Silver Slugger team seven times and won five Rawlings Gold Glove awards for defensive excellence.
The list of Gwynn’s honors off the field is just as impressive. Tony Gwynn received the Roberto Clemente Man of the Year Award in 1999 for combining sportsmanship and community service with excellence on the field. Other honors include the 1999 Lou Gehrig Memorial Award, 1995 Branch Rickey Award, and induction into the World Sports Humanitarian Hall of Fame.