San Diego Padres superstar Fernando Tatis Jr. missed all of the 2022 season with injury and suspension. Tatis provided a positive update on his health, and he also had a message for his fans.
Tatis participated in a panel discussion with other Padres stars where the topic of his suspension came up. The 24-year-old said he looked forward to redeeming himself in 2023.
“I’ve missed it a lot,” Tatis said. “I mean, I missed a year of it, and I’m not looking forward to missing anymore. It just feels great to be out there again.”
The Padres found success without the star shortstop in 2022. Following their blockbuster move to acquire Juan Soto, the Padres made the NLCS. They defeated the New York Mets and Los Angeles Dodgers before falling to the Philadelphia Phillies.
Missing the postseason was hard to reconcile, Tatis revealed. But missing that time has lit a fire under him, and he hopes that translates to his on-field performance in 2023.
“I don’t want to put much words into it, I more want to prove myself on the field, just get back to the field with my boys. I definitely missed that fire, being in the jungle with them,” Tatis said. “It was definitely a dagger to my heart and now I’m looking forward to being on that front line.”
Tatis likely finds himself in a different position in 2023, however. The Padres signed former Red Sox star Xander Bogaerts to a massive 11-year contract at the Winter Meetings. Furthermore, the team received quality production from Ha-seong Kim at shortstop in Tatis’s absence.
Regardless of where Tatis plays, he has one goal in mind. The 24-year-old wants to redeem himself after a PED suspension tarnished his reputation. Only time will tell if he is successful in proving the doubters wrong.