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Padres Win On Jerry Coleman Day

Perfect Way To Honor The Hall Of Famer

By Derek Togerson
|  Saturday, Sep 15, 2012  |  Updated 11:14 PM PDT
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Padres Win On Jerry Coleman Day

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SAN DIEGO, CA - SEPTEMBER 15: Jesus Guzman #15 of the San Diego Padres is congratulated by Yonder Alonso #23 and Logan Forsythe #11 after hitting a three-run homer during the third inning of a baseball game against the Colorado Rockies at Petco Park on September 15, 2012 in San Diego, California. The Padres won 4-3. (Photo by Denis Poroy/Getty Images)

The Padres got a lot right on Saturday night at PETCO Park.

They got great pitching from rookie Casey Kelly and their stellar bullpen.

They got a clutch- 3-run home run from Jesus Guzman.

And they got to unveil a statue of the legendary Jerry Coleman in the Easy Village entrance.

Overall, not a bad night at the ballpark.

Before the Padres beat the Rockies 4-3, running their record to 70-76 and giving legitimate hope to their quest to finish without a losing record, the franchise showed us its tribute to Jerry Coleman, a man who's spent 70 years in baseball, 40 of them with the Padres.

Coleman is in the Baseball Hall of Fame as a broadcaster. He's also a former Padres manager and a World Series champion as a player with the Yankees. But his biggest contributions may have come from his military service. The Colonel was a Marine Corps pilot in both World War II and the Korean War.

Coleman is not from San Diego, but he is "of" San Diego. He loves us as much as we love him.

"I couldn't find a better place to spend my final days than here in San Diego," he said, choking back tears.

Congratulations to a true American hero ... and a San Diego treasure.

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