Pitcher Mark Davis, catcher Benito Santiago and trainer Dick Dent will be part of a group of major league all-stars leaving this week for a 7-game, 11-day tour of Japan.
After a Tuesday workout in Dodger Stadium, the all-stars will fly to Japan on Wednesday, attend a welcoming dinner Thursday in Tokyo and open play Friday.
“I’m very excited about going,” Davis said from his home in Scottsdale, Ariz. “It will be nice to see that part of the world. Baseball has allowed me to see a number of things I wouldn’t ordinarily see. It’s something I look at as a blessing.”
Davis was offered a spot on the all-star team just before the Padres finished the season in Houston. He has never been to Japan and didn’t hesitate to accept.
It’s another chapter in a remarkable year for Davis. After an appearance on the National League All-Star team and 28 saves, the left-hander will finish his season on a field in Japan.
“I look at it as a dream year,” he said. “I want to soak everything in, like I did at the All-Star Game. I want to enjoy everything and get everything I can out of it, from going to functions to shagging balls during batting practice.”
Since the end of the season, Davis has been throwing batting practice every other day to players in an instructional league. But he has only one goal on the trip: dinner at a Japanese steak house.
“I’ve heard about their Kobe beef,” Davis said. “I’ve heard they feed their cattle differently and supposedly have the best beef in the world.”
The Cincinnati Reds are interested in Padre first baseman-outfielder John Kruk, the Associated Press reported Sunday.
Cincinnati General Manager Murray Cook said he has talked to the Padres this season about Kruk. The Reds are unhappy with first baseman Nick Esasky’s erratic production.
But Padre Manager-General Manager Jack McKeon downplayed the chances of a deal.
“We haven’t talked with Cincinnati recently, why should we,” McKeon said. “We’re not trying to get rid of Kruk or any of these guys. But if someone’s interested, make me an offer.”
Cook said the teams have talked, “although not terribly recently. But I imagine the trade for (former Yankee Jack) Clark has to shake things out a little bit there. They have to make room for Clark. That’s only natural speculation.”
Said McKeon: “We’ve talked with (the Reds) a year or so ago, but that was Pete Rose and (former Padre Manager) Larry Bowa talking.”
New Guys Dept.: Walt Terrell, acquired Friday from Detroit for Chris Brown and Keith Moreland, said he doesn’t view his return to the National League as anything special.
The most noticeable change for Terrell, who last played in the NL in 1984 when he was with the Mets, is that there is no designated hitter.
“Now I’m going to have to hit and bunt,” Terrell said. “That’s going to be different. When they see me swing, they’ll wish they never acquired me.”
Maybe not. According to Terrell, he hit a home run in Jack Murphy Stadium in 1983.
“I had 3 hits and drove in 5 runs that day,” he said.
Will he do it again?
“I was very lucky, believe me,” he said.
Add Terrell: The right-hander said he isn’t that familiar with the Padres, but he does know something about the team.
“I read the papers and watch sports every day,” he said. “I don’t know every player on the team, but I’ve played with some before: Eric Show (in winter ball) and Marvell Wynne (when they were with the Mets).”
How about this for a parallel: In the Padres’ first trade this week, Stanley Jefferson, who wears uniform No. 22, was one of those who went to the Yankees for Jack Clark, who was issued No. 22. Friday, Chris Brown, No. 35, went to Detroit for Walt Terrell, who also wears No. 35. . . . This from Detroit General Manager Bill Lajoie on Brown: “He’s got a tremendous amount of ability, as everyone knows. Hopefully, he’s over his injuries.” Sound familiar?