Padres chairman and owner Peter Seidler died in San Diego Tuesday at the age of 63.
The Padres’ announcement did not indicate a cause of death, but the San Diego Union-Tribune reported that Seidler had been battling an illness for months.
In a statement, Padres CEO Erik Greupner said, “The Padres organization mourns the passing of our beloved chairman and owner, Peter Seidler. Today, our love and prayers encircle Peter’s family as they grieve the loss of an extraordinary husband, father, son, brother, uncle, and friend.
“Peter was a kind and generous man who was devoted to his wife, children, and extended family. He also consistently exhibited heartfelt compassion for others, especially those less fortunate. His impact on the city of San Diego and the baseball world will be felt for generations. His generous spirit is now firmly embedded in the fabric of the Padres. Although he was our chairman and owner, Peter was at his core a Padres fan. He will be dearly missed.”
According to the team, members of the public will have an opportunity to pay their respects at Petco Park starting Tuesday afternoon and continuing Wednesday. The Home Plate Gate at Petco Park will be opened and free parking will be available at Tailgate Lot.
Many members of the public left flowers and paused to honor Seidler, as did pitcher Yu Darvish. The Union-Tribune and 97.3 the Fan reported that he arrived with his wife to leave blooms at the memorial, set up on the stairs at the gate.
Darvish posted on X that “I’m sure everyone that knew him would agree with me when I say Peter was a truly wonderful human being, and being in his presence was always a blessing. He was a teacher of life, and taught me countless lessons (from) the all the interactions we had.”
In addition, the San Diego Convention Center announced that the venue would be lit up in “Padres gold” Tuesday and Wednesday in Seidler’s memory.
Major League Baseball Commissioner Rob Manfred issued a statement saying, “I am deeply saddened by the news of Peter’s passing. Peter grew up in a baseball family, and his love of the game was evident throughout his life. He was passionate about owning the Padres and bringing the fans of San Diego a team in which they could always take pride. Peter made sure the Padres were part of community solutions in San Diego, particularly with the homeless community. He was an enthusiastic supporter of using the Padres and Major League Baseball to bring people together and help others.
“On behalf of Major League Baseball, I send my deepest condolences to Peter’s wife Sheel and their family, his Padres colleagues and the fans of San Diego.”
San Diego Mayor Todd Gloria said he was “deeply saddened” by Seidler’s passing.
“Peter was a true visionary leader who had a deep love for the game of baseball and the San Diego Padres, and also an unwavering commitment to our city,” Gloria said in a statement. “As chairman of the Padres, he made the organization about so much more than baseball; he made the team an incredible community partner. Peter was perhaps best known for his great compassion for people experiencing homelessness, and everyone who worked with him will remember him for his kind and humble spirit.
“San Diego lost a truly special person today, but our city is a better place because of him. Our entire city mourns his passing, and we extend our hearts to his family and the entire Padres organization.”
Teams throughout baseball expressed their condolences, including the Los Angeles Dodgers. Others added their voices, such as stars Dave Winfield, a Padre Hall of Famer, and Alex Rodriguez.
Broadcaster Ted Leitner, once the voice of the Padres, said on X that “for the rest of my days” he will think of Seidler when he recalls the Friars beating the heavily favored Dodgers in the 2022 playoffs.
“How much he wanted to win for our city that he loved and that loved him. Thank you Peter Seidler. Rest my friend.”
City News Service contributed to this article.
Updated at 12:15 p.m. and 9:45 p.m. Nov. 14, 2023