While attending a Padres game this weekend I was asked "why do the Padres have a friar for their mascot and not a padre?" (paraphrased)
I really had no answer to this question. I hadn't even thought much about it during my numerous years living in-and-around San Diego.
I attended my first Padre game back at Jack Murphy ("The Murph") Stadium around 1996 just before Qualcomm purchased the naming rights in 1997.
As a young kid playing baseball very far east of southern California in the 80s, I was (still am) a huge fan of Tony Gwynn and so I watched the Padres from afar. (I'm still holding out hope that he'll run for mayor and fix all of our city problems...)