Padres gearing up for Tuesday home opener - San Diego, California News Station - KFMB Channel 8 - cbs8.com

Padres gearing up for Tuesday home opener

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SAN DIEGO (CNS) - The Padres announced Monday that Greg Vaughn, the team's Most Valuable Player in the 1998 National League championship season, will throw out the ceremonial first pitch before Tuesday's home opener.

Pre-game festivities are scheduled to begin at 3 p.m. at Petco Park, with the Padres taking on the Los Angeles Dodgers at 3:40 p.m.

Vaughn slammed 50 home runs and drove in 119 runs to lead the Friars into the World Series against the New York Yankees that year. He is set to make his honorary toss to Carlos Hernandez, a catcher on the 1998 team.

The ceremony, emceed by television play-by-play announcer Dick Enberg, will also include former reliever Trevor Hoffman giving a tribute to the late bullpen coach Darrel Akerfelds. He died last year following a two-year battle with pancreatic cancer.

Miss California 2010 Arianna Afsar will sing the National Anthem and sailors from the USS Russell and the USS Boxer will unfurl the Holiday Bowl's giant American flag.

Before the pre-game ceremonies get started, the annual East Village Opening Day Block Party will be held. The event, which begins at 11 a.m., will feature live entertainment and food along J Street between Seventh and 10th avenues.

Clayton Richard will be the starting pitcher for the Padres, who concluded their season-opening road trip with a 1-5 record. The Dodgers, winners four times in a six-game homestand, will counter with Josh Beckett.

The Metropolitan Transit System will run extra trolley trains on the Green Line beginning at 1:30 p.m. between Qualcomm Stadium and downtown San Diego. Enhanced service will begin on the Blue Line starting at 1:45 p.m. from San Ysidro.

The first 150 fans who board trains at Qualcomm Stadium, Spring Street Station in La Mesa or H Street Station in Chula Vista after 1:30 p.m. will receive a free soft drink and box of Cracker Jacks while supplies last, according to the MTS.

The North County Transit District said its scheduled 7:10 p.m. northbound departure from San Diego might be held until 7:30 p.m., depending on how long the game goes.

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