A Helping Glove: Rockies, Padres Honor Aurora Victims on Diamond
When a tragedy shakes the country, it doesn’t check its coat at the baseball field’s gates.
The horrific shooting that resulted in 12 deaths during the midnight premiere of “The Dark Knight Rises” at an Aurora, Colo., movie theater Friday took place a mere 20-minute drive away from the Rockies’ home field in Denver. In Thomas Harding’s article for MLB.com, he details how the team honored the victims in the Padres matchup Friday in San Diego.
“The Padres and Rockies observed a moment of silence before Friday’s game at Petco Park. The Rockies hung a black jersey in their dugout, reading ‘We remember 7-20,’ and wore purple jerseys and black wristbands in honor of those killed and injured.
The Rockies described their actions in a statement that was read on Root Sports Rocky Mountain at the start of its broadcast. The flags at Petco Park were flown at half-staff, and the Rockies stood at the edge of the warning track in front of their dugout during pregame ceremonies as a show of solidarity.
Harding notes the massacre sparked the memories of the nightmare of the Columbine shooting in 1999. The Rockies postponed their scheduled game against the Expos that day. In Harding’s piece, he quotes outfielder Carlos Gonzalez talking about the escape that sports offer fans.
”When there were political times, when they were trying to elect the president, all that stuff, people always have the pressure of being in danger every day,” Gonzalez said. “Going to the stadium is a really good way to escape, to just relax their mind, enjoy the game and don’t think of anything else — family problems or what is happening in the country. We work hard to put on a show for the fans because, in the end, baseball is about them.” — Carlos Gonzalez
In class, the Padres and Rockies provided an escape for a crowd of more than 25,000 (plus the countless television viewers and radio listeners) in San Diego’s 9-5 victory.