The San Diego Padres haven’t been around for as long as some of the other franchises in the MLB, but some of the greatest players in the league’s history have played for their team. They may not have led the Padres to any World Series titles, and while they seem to be in a great spot to contend for a championship currently, that doesn’t mean they haven’t had good players on their roster. So with the Padres in a current stretch of success, let’s take a trip down memory lane and look at some of the best players from their franchise’s history.

10. Gene Richards

Position: Left Field and First Base

Years with Padres: 1977-1983

Notable Accolades: N/A

Gene Richards was never the flashiest player during his career, but he was consistent if nothing else. A strong contact hitter who was among the biggest threats on the bases in the league, Richards spent time all over the outfield, primarily in left field, as well as filling in at first base from time to time for the Padres during his seven season stint with the team. Richards never hit more than five home runs in a season, but it didn’t matter because he hit at least .275 in every season with San Diego, and stole over 30 bases in four seasons as well. Richards was a speedster, and while he didn’t have gaudy numbers, his ability to set the table for the Padres on a consistent basis earns him a spot on the greatest Padres of all time list.

9. Randy Jones

Position: Starting Pitcher

Years with Padres: 1973-1980

Notable Accolades: 1976 NL CY Young, Two-time All-Star

If it weren’t for a dominant two season stretch in 1975 and 1976, Randy Jones almost certainly wouldn’t have made this list. But Jones was so dominant during those two seasons that he managed to land a spot here. After leading the league in losses in 1974 with 22, Jones managed to put together a near Cy Young campaign the next season (20-12, 2.24 ERA, 103 K, 1.05 WHIP) from out of nowhere. He did manage to win the Cy Young in 1976 (22-14, 2.74 ERA, 93 K, 1.03 WHIP) after leading the league in starts (40) and complete game (25). Jones was never able to replicate this two season stretch and was OK throughout the rest of his career, but for a point in time, he was arguably the best pitcher in the league.

8. Gene Tenace

Position: Catcher and First Base

Years with Padres: 1977-1980

Notable Accolades: N/A

Gene Tenace’s stint with the Padres wasn’t particularly long, and while his best days with the Oakland Athletics were largely behind him, that didn’t prevent him from having a very successful stint with San Diego. Tenace was a very strange hitter, as he did not hit for very high averages, but almost always found his way on base thanks to walks. Tenace was extremely disciplined at the plate, drawing at least 92 walks in each season with the Padres, which made up for his shortcomings in other areas. Tenace was good for somewhere between 15-20 home runs a season with San Diego, and he managed to make a big impact in a short time with the Padres, which allows him to sneak into the number eight spot here.

7. Andy Benes

Position: Starting Pitcher

Years with Padres: 1989-1995

Notable Accolades: 1993 NL All-Star

Andy Benes is another example of how consistency can help you make your mark with the Padres. He was never the best pitcher ever, but he always managed to find a way to go out and give his team a chance to win, and that was what made him special. Benes was an innings eater early on in his career with San Diego, and he managed to earn some Cy Young consideration in 1991 with a strong campaign. Benes was an All-Star in 1993 (15-15, 3.78 ERA, 179 K, 1.24 WHIP) even if it wasn’t necessarily his strongest season. Benes led the NL in strikeouts in 1994, as well as losses with 14 strangely enough, but he struggled in 1995 and ended up being traded to the Seattle Mariners. Still, Benes was a consistent pitcher for the Padres, earning himself a place in their history.

6. Adrian Gonzalez

Position: First Base

Years with Padres: 2006-2010

Notable Accolades: Three-time NL All-Star, Two-time Gold Glove winner

Adrian Gonzalez seemed to be on the brink of superstardom when he was traded to the Boston Red Sox, but with his career now over, it’s clear that Gonzalez’s best stretch of baseball came during his time with the Padres. Gonzalez found his way into the starting lineup in 2006, and quickly established himself as one of the top first basemen in the MLB. Gonzalez did it all with San Diego, as he hit for a high average and around 30 home runs, drove in tons of runs, and played great defense at first base. Gonzalez’s best season with the Padres was his last one in 2010 (.298 BA, 31 HR, 101 RBI, .904 OPS) which saw him finish fourth in the NL MVP race. It didn’t seem like it at the time, but that ended up being Gonzalez’s peak, and he will always be remembered as one of the greatest Padres of all time.

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5. Andy Ashby

Position: Starting Pitcher

Years with Padres: 1993-1999, 2004

Notable Accolades: Two-time NL All-Star

Andy Ashby stuck around with the Padres for longer than most folks behind him on this list, and his strong play throughout his tenure has helped him crack a spot on this list. Ashby was never the greatest pitcher, but he consistently ate innings, and he really found his stride towards the end of his tenure with San Diego. Ashby was an All-Star in 1998 and 1999, his two final seasons with the Padres, but that was about as high as his career went. Ashby returned in 2004 but only pitched in two games for two innings, but by then, his status with San Diego was already set in stone. Even if they aren’t the most glamorous numbers, Ashby held their rotation together for much of the 90s, and is an easy choice for this greatest Padres of all time list.

4. Trevor Hoffman

Position: Closer

Years with Padres: 1993-2008

Notable Accolades: Six-time NL All-Star, Two-time Rolaids Relief winner, Hall of Famer

A seemingly harmless trade with the Florida Marlins that involved Trevor Hoffman ended up giving the Padres one of the best closers in the history of the MLB. Hoffman took over as the team’s full time closer in 1994, and never looked back. Hoffman was about as consistent as they come, and the fact that he very nearly won the Cy Young twice as a closer shows how good he was. Hoffman’s superstar season in 1998 (4-2, 1.48 ERA, 53 SV, 86 K, 0.85 WHIP) saw him finish second in the Cy Young race, and he finished second again in 2006, his age 38 season, with another fantastic campaign (0-2, 2.14 ERA, 46 SV, 50 K, 0.97 WHIP). Hoffman’s 601 total saves are second in MLB history, and it’s no surprise that he found his way into the Hall of Fame. Safe to say, Hoffman won’t be forgotten about for quite some time.

3. Jake Peavy

Position: Starting Pitcher

Years with Padres: 2002-2009

Notable Accolades: 2007 NL CY Young, 2007 Triple Crown winner, Two-time NL All-Star

It wasn’t the longest stretch, but Jake Peavy was absolutely electric early on in his career with the Padres. It took awhile for him to find his way, but Peavy announced himself to the world in 2004 when he led the majors with a 2.27 ERA. Peavy was an All-Star in 2005 before struggling in 2006, paving the way for a historic 2007 campaign that saw him win the pitching triple crown and the NL Cy Young award (19-6, 2.54 ERA, 240 K, 1.06 WHIP). Peavy eventually found his way off the lowly Padres, but he was never as good as he was to start his career with San Diego, and his 2007 season will continue to be regarded as one of the greatest recent seasons of pitching for quite some time.

2. Dave Winfield

Position: Right Field

Years with Padres: 1973-1980

Notable Accolades: Four-time NL All-Star, Two-time Gold Glove winner, Hall of Famer

Dave Winfield will likely be remembered more for his contributions with the New York Yankees, but before he became a full fledged star with them, he got his start with the Padres. Winfield gradually turned himself into an indispensable piece of San Diego’s lineup, hitting for contact, power, while playing great defense in right field as well. Winfield was an All-Star in his final four seasons with San Diego, but his best season was easily in 1979 (.308 BA, 34 HR, 118 RBI, 15 SB, .953 OPS) when he finished third in the NL MVP voting. Winfield remained productive well into his 40s, but without his start with the Padres, none of his later success would have happened, and he is easily one of their greatest players of all time.

1. Tony Gwynn

Position: Right Field

Years with Padres: 1982-2001

Notable Accolades: 15-time NL All-Star, five-time Gold Glove winner, seven-time Silver Slugger, Hall of Famer

There were some close calls earlier in this list, but this isn’t even close. Tony Gwynn, also known as Mr. Padre, is far and away the greatest player in the franchise’s history, and it isn’t particularly close. One of the best pure contact hitters in the game, Gwynn hit above .300 in every season but his rookie campaign in 1982, in which he only played in 54 games. Gwynn never won an MVP, but he was an absolute machine at the plate. He led the league in batting average eight times, and he very nearly hit for .400 in 1994, finishing with a .394 average, which is just absurd. Gwynn played elite defense in right field as well, and his legacy with the team is untouchable. It will be a long-time until anyone finds a way to top Gwynn on this list, and there’s a good chance that it may never end up happening.