San Diego Sports
San Diego’s sports industry is a noteworthy part of their history and an influential factor in their future. The city has teams in the major league, semi-pro, amateur, and college levels.
There is one major league team in San Diego: the San Diego Padres. The team plays in Petco Park and the team has been in existence since 1969. In 2009, the Inaugural World Baseball Classic semi-final and final games were played in that same venue. In 2016, San Diego hosted the MLB All-Star Game. This was the last time that the All-Star game determines Home Field Advantage in the World Series.
Just recently in 2017, an expansion franchise was awarded by the National Lacrosse League to the city and to Joseph Tsai, the owner of the team. The team is set to play starting in December of 2018.
San Diego has one professional American football team: The San Diego Chargers, which competed in the NFL or National Football League. They began playing in 1960 with the American Football League or AFL, where the team was a charter member. Just recently, the AAF or Alliance of American Football announced that they will be starting a franchise in San Diego for their 2019 inaugural season.
In San Diego, ice hockey has the longest history of minor league teams. It started with the San Diego Skyhawks, then to the San Diego Gulls, which had bigger attendance than the Houston Rockets, Los Angeles Kings, and Oakland Seals. The current San Diego Gulls are owned by the Anaheim Ducks of the National Hockey League or NHL.
The San Diego Sockers is an expansion franchise awarded to the North American Soccer League. The current team plays in the Major Arena Soccer League. It was announced in 2017 that a San Diego 1904 FC franchise will be joining the North American Soccer league in 2018. The club, founded by professional soccer players namely Eden Hazard, Demba Ba, Moussa Sow, and Yohan Cabaye, intends to construct a soccer complex in the North County of San Diego. It was also announced that the club is planning to join the United Soccer League in 2019 and that negotiations are underway.
Prior to the beginning of the 2014 season, the San Diego Aviators moved from New York, where they were the New York Sportimes, to San Diego. The city has had two WTT franchises. The San Diego Friars went on to play from 1975 to 1978. The team came back in 1981 and, after three seasons, was renamed to San Diego Buds.