Don Bauder 5:30 p.m., July 29
Gambling hypocrisy: Padres protested wagering facility near Petco
But racing board approved Tilted Kilt Pub and Restaurant
On January 17, the California Racing Board unanimously approved a new mini-satellite gambling facility near the right field bleachers of Petco Park, the Tilted Kilt Pub and Restaurant, over the objections of the San Diego Padres. According to several racing publications, Caroline Perry, a lawyer for the Padres, argued that "The issue of gambling in and around baseball is of greatest concern. While we understand that this [is] intended for wagering on horse racing, we believe that it will attract bookies that do accept wagers on baseball." But the board said the gambling facility was legal under California law and had met City of San Diego requirements.
Perry said the Padres's opposition stemmed from Major League Baseball's concerns about gambling influencing the sport. Hmm. If the Padres are so pious about gambling, why have those Sycuan casino ads been so prominently displayed in connection with the team? In fact, the Padres and Sycuan have had a symbiotic relationship. As I have stated in several columns, pro sports teams (particularly pro football) historically were founded and financed by gamblers, usually with organized crime ties. This is less true with baseball, but there have been some questionable owners through the years.