- David Schoenfield, SweetSpot blogger
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Gary Sheffield, 1992
The Padres had winning records in 1991 and 1992 but then came one of the darkest periods in the franchise's history, the infamous fire sale in 1993. TV exec Tom Werner had purchased the club in 1990 but apparently decided he didn't like the business side of the sport. The Padres traded away Sheffield, Tony Fernandez, Fred McGriff, Darrin Jackson, Bruce Hurst and Greg Harris. During this period, they also failed to sign second-round draft picks Todd Helton and Troy Glaus. Some of the trades worked out OK -- they got Trevor Hoffman in the Sheffield deal and Andy Ashby and Brad Ausmus for Hurst and Harris, but the McGriff and Fernandez deals yielded little. Sheffield's road uniform was the basic road jersey throughout the decade.
Ken Caminiti, 1998
The Padres won the NL West in 1996, thanks to an MVP season from Ken Caminiti, 110 runs from Rickey Henderson, a .353 season from Tony Gwynn. In 1998, they had the best season in franchise history, winning 98 games and upsetting the 106-win Braves and 102-win Astros in the playoffs. Caminiti wears the dark blue alternate top the team wore at home at times that season.
Kevin Brown, 1998
A big reason for San Diego's success in '98 was Brown, who came over from the Marlins for Derrek Lee (the Marlins conducted their own fire sale). Trevor Hoffman had 53 saves, Andy Ashby won 17 games, Greg Vaughn hit 50 home runs and Gwynn hit .321 with 16 home runs. Alas, the Padres were swept in the World Series by the Yankees. Brown wears the white pinstriped home jersey from the decade.
We've looked at the 1970s and the 1980s. Let's move to the 1990s, a decade which saw the Padres return to the World Series and Tony Gwynn capture four more batting titles.