Padres add exhibition game to FanFest in 2015

San Diego to host Mexican League Champions Mexico City Red Devils at Petco Park on April 4

SAN DIEGO - The San Diego Padres today announced 2015 FanFest presented by State Farm will feature the addition of an exhibition game against the Mexico City Red Devils (Diablos Rojos del México) of the Mexican Baseball League on Saturday, April 4 at Petco Park.                              

2015 FanFest presented by State Farm will be the first opportunity for fans to see the 2015 Padres at Petco Park. The annual event is free, but pre-registration is required for an entry ticket. Gates open to the general public at 9:00 a.m. Padres Members receive exclusive early access beginning at 8:00 a.m. First pitch for the exhibition game against the Diablos Rojos is slated for 2:00 p.m. Free parking will be provided in Padres-owned lots around the ballpark.

Pre-registration will be required, as each entry ticket will include an assigned seat for the exhibition game. Season Ticket Members will have the option to secure their Opening Day seats for the exhibition game. As the event approaches, Members will be sent instructions via email on how to access their tickets through their online account manager. General public will have the opportunity to register for best available seats at no cost at www.padres.com/fanfest. Additional details, including a full schedule of the day's events and pre-registration instructions, will be released at a later date.

While there will be some changes to the layout and schedule from years past, Padres FanFest presented by State Farm will feature many of the activities fans have come to love about the event, including player, coach and alumni autograph opportunities, the Padres Foundation Garage Sale, on-field activities and interactive forums. Field access will be limited to the morning hours of the event, in order to accommodate preparation for the exhibition game.

"Padres FanFest will reach a new level of excitement in 2015 with the addition of an exhibition game against Mexico's most popular baseball team," said Padres President and CEO Mike Dee. "Construction of the new video board necessitated pushing FanFest closer to the regular season, and we are excited that the stars aligned for this game to be part of the event. I'd like to thank Alfredo Harp Helú and the Diablos Rojos organization for their commitment to making this game happen."

Founded in 1940, the Mexico City Diablos Rojos franchise is owned by Alfredo Harp Helú, who is also part of the Padres' ownership group. The team is skippered by third-year manager and former Padres catcher Miguel Ojeda, who played in San Diego from 2003-2005. The club has won 16 Mexican League championships in its history, the most of any professional club in any sport in Mexico. The Red Devils secured their most recent title during the 2014 season, after they posted a league-best 70-42 regular season record and won 12 of their 14 playoff games, including a series sweep of the Pericos de Puebla in the Mexican League Championship. Including last season, Mexico City has made a postseason appearance in each of the last 32 seasons.

For the Padres, the matchup will be the 14th in club history against a Mexican League opponent, but the first in more than 30 years, and the first played on American soil. The Friars have previously faced off against the Mexico City franchise, formerly known as the "Rojos," on six occasions, most recently on March 11, 1981, which was also the last time San Diego played an exhibition contest against a Mexican League opponent. In addition to the Diablos Rojos, the Padres have also competed against the Tigres de Mexico three times (twice in 1970, 1981), Leones de Yucatan twice (1980) and the Plataneros de Tabasco (1980) and Saraperos de Saltillo once (1972).