The San Diego Padres and Their Lucky Goose

The San Diego Padres conclude their well-fought 2022 season


Sydney Chan

On October 15, 2022, the San Diego Padres beat the Los Angeles Dodgers to advance in the postseason bracket. After a strong pitch by Padres pitcher Josh Hader and a swing-and-a-miss from Dodgers player Freddie Freeman, the stadium was electric.

The San Diego Padres’ well-fought season came to an end on Sunday, October 23 in a nail-biter against the Philadelphia Phillies. Although over before San Diego fans hoped, the 2022 postseason was one to remember. From the growing popularity of the phrase, “LFGSD” (“Let’s F**king Go, San Diego”), to the lucky goose in LA, the Padres are ready to keep up the momentum for next year. 

Avid Padres fan Jacob Tsai (‘25) said, “The season was special because it rejuvenated and united the city like we’ve never seen before. It gave San Diego sports fans something to be excited about.”

“I wouldn’t ask for any better group to go to war with every single day,” Padres third baseman Manny Machado shared with Major League Baseball (MLB). “We did a hell of a job all year. We accomplished a lot of things. People didn’t expect us to be here, but here we were.” 

This year was especially thrilling because of the modified structure of MLB’s postseason. In years prior, each league (either the National League or the American League, the two categories that MLB teams are filtered into), featured five teams in their postseason brackets: three division winners and two wild card teams who would start the postseason off with a one-game playoff. This year, each league featured six teams in their postseason brackets, each side adding an extra wild card. The Padres began the postseason as a wild card team, with 89 total wins during the regular season.

The Padres’ journey began with a 3-game battle against the New York Mets, who had won a whopping 101 games during the regular season. After a strong defeat of the Mets in Game 1 (with a score of 7-1 Padres) but a loss to the Mets in Game 2 (with a score 7-3 Mets), San Diego was on their toes for Game 3. The Padres did not disappoint with a 6-0 sweep, and from then on, moved to play a Best-of-5 series against National League West Champs, the Los Angeles Dodgers. 

This season, LA clinched its ninth division title in ten years and its tenth straight postseason berth (“clinching a berth” in baseball means that a team has won enough regular season games to qualify for the end-of-season playoffs), and were underway to make it to the world series. With 111 regular season wins, many were ready to call off SD, especially after a 5-3 loss in the first game. 

But during the eighth inning of Game 2, a goose randomly landed on the field. Padres fans claim that the goose was a good luck charm, since it launched the three game winning streak that led the Padres to win the series in four games.

I had the pleasure of being at Game 4 in Petco stadium, when the roar of the crowd heightened after Dodgers player Freddie Freeman struck out to a strong pitch by Padres pitcher Josh Hader. The rain was pouring, the fans were singing, the fireworks were exploding; it was surely a night to remember.

Passionate Padres fan Peyten Seltzer (‘24) agreed. “Beating the Dodgers in the NLDS was an incredible moment and watching Manny Machado have an amazing year was really exciting,” she said. “The playoff atmosphere specifically during the NLDS games against the Dodgers was something I will never forget.”

The memories of these past few months will stay remarkable. “I love the goose and LFGSD,” Jacob said. People first started using the phrase in June of 2022 when Padres catcher Jorge Alfaro said it on a hot mic in front of a Petco Park crowd and on live television, after hitting a walk-off single to win the game by one against the Arizona Diamondbacks. Now, Padres fans can be seen not only wearing their favorite players’ jerseys, but also with t-shirts displaying this phrase.

The memories from the Padres 2022 season are unforgettable.
The growing popularity of the phrase “LFGSD” and the lucky goose are traditions that “can be used for years to come!” Peyten Seltzer (‘24) shared. (Sydney Chan)

As for the goose, “[it] was too great of a coincidence for it not to be an omen,” Jacob said. The animal quickly became the subject of Padres fans’ game attire and accessories, from goose shirts, to goose hats, to goose signs. During Game 4 versus the Dodgers, the goose even showed up on the jumbotron to encourage fans to make even more noise.

Pitcher Joe Musgrove said in an interview with The Athletic, “The desire, the passion, the fight that’s in everybody in here, it’s something not a lot of people will ever see. … I couldn’t be more proud of the guys here.”

Peyten said, “I can’t wait for next season to hopefully see the Padres go all the way and win a World Series!” The sky’s the limit for the San Diego Padres in the 2023 season. LFGSD.