Friday, May 24, 2024

San Diego Sports Events to Watch this Month: May 2024 | San Diego Magazine

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San Diego Padres vs. Los Angeles Dodgers

Friday, May 10 | 6:40 p.m. | Petco Park

Watch: Padres.TV

Few things are as cathartic as chanting “Beat L.A.” with 45,000 of your closest friends, and the Padres will need all the help they can get from their fans when they face the Dodgers at Petco Park this month. The Pads’ offense this season has been fine enough, with rookies like center fielder Jackson Merrill pulling their weight and established stars like third baseman Manny Machado turning in solid, if unspectacular seasons.

But being fine enough at the plate doesn’t cut it when the pitching is among the worst in baseball. Only seven teams have a worse earned run average. That combination has led to a frustrating start for the Padres, who as of this writing sit three games under .500 and look up at five teams in the playoff standings. With their divisional rivals in town, the Padres have a chance to get back in the playoff race. 

Courtesy of San Diego Wave FC

San Diego Wave Women in Sports Panel

Wednesday, May 8 | 5:00 p.m. | Snapdragon Stadium

In what might be the best deal in town this month, the San Diego chapter of Women in Sports and Events (WISE) is hosting a panel on the business of sports before the Wave’s game against the Utah Royals. Announced panelists include Jessi Miley-Dyer, commissioner of the World Surf League; Danielle Nuzzo, head of communications with Wave FC partner, Trust and Will; and Karla Thompson, executive director of performance and development with the Wave. For $40, attendees receive a “seat at the game, access to the pre-match panel discussion and post-discussion networking, and a donation to WISE San Diego,” as well as lite bites and a drink voucher, according to the nonprofit.

Locally, the Wave’s game attendance is among the best in American soccer and the Mojo starting play this year represents the growth of women’s indoor volleyball. Nationally, Indiana Fever’s Caitlin Clark is everywhere. Women’s sports are rightfully more popular than ever, and WISE plays their part by empowering “women in the business of sports with the tools to reach their career goals.”

San Diego Wave soccer play about to shoot a goal

San Diego Wave vs. NY/NJ Gotham FC

Sunday, May 12 | 4:30 p.m. | Snapdragon Stadium

Watch: NSWL+

The Wave and Gotham FC will both look to get back on track when they face off in a Sunday matinee at Snapdragon Stadium. The Wave are eighth in the league table and are clinging to the last playoff spot based on goal differential. Gotham FC are eleventh, closer to the bottom of the table than the top. It’s a far cry from last year, when the Wave were the NWSL’s best regular season team and Gotham FC survived the playoffs and won the championship. To prove who was better, the two heavyweights faced each other in March in the NWSL’s Challenge Cup.

The Wave won an entertaining slugfest 1-0, thanks to an 88th-minute header off a corner kick from star forward Alex Morgan. Since then, neither team has maintained their 2023 form. Up for grabs in San Diego is a win and three crucial points in the standings that could determine whether either team gets to compete in next year’s Challenge Cup.

Ex-padres baseball player Juan Soto reacts to hitting a home-run
Courtesy of MLB

San Diego Padres vs. New York Yankees

Friday, May 24 | 6:40 p.m. | Petco Park

Watch: Padres.TV

The unofficial start of summer means the Evil Empire is in town. It’s a rare visit to San Diego for the New York Yankees, as they’ve played here just three times in the last 22 years. (Let’s not acknowledge the 1998 World Series, in which the Yankees completed a four-game sweep at Qualcomm Stadium.) It also means a familiar face returns to right field. Former Padres star Juan Soto was traded to New York in the offseason and is off to a monster start for the Bronx Bombers, batting .325 with eight home runs and has an absurd .438 on-base percentage.

Before being shipped out of town, Soto helped the Padres get to the National League Championship Series in 2022 and was a bright spot in a disappointing 2023 season. If the Friar Faithful are nice to him during his return, then maybe, just maybe, Soto considers a return to San Diego as a free agent after the season. 

West Coast Sevens San Diego Gaelic Sports tournament at Southwestern College on May 25
Courtesy of The West Coast Sevens San Diego

West Coast Sevens Gaelic Games

Saturday, May 25 | 9:00 a.m. | Southwestern College

What do San Diego and Ireland have in common? If you guessed a commitment to unique and ancient sports, then you might be a participant in the annual West Coast Sevens Gaelic Games at Southwestern College. Teams from around the world fly into San Diego for Memorial Day weekend to play traditional Irish field sports, including Gaelic football, which is like putting basketball, soccer, and rugby into a blender, and Camogie, a stick-and-ball game for women that resembles field hockey, baseball, and lacrosse.

While Gaelic games are foreign to most Americans, they are among Ireland’s most popular sports–the Gaelic Athletic Association is Ireland’s largest sports organization, according to The Guardian–and the Irish Times recently reported on the games’ surging popularity in Asia. For San Diegans, it’s a bit of culture that doesn’t require travel or even money. According to West Coast Sevens’ Instagram account, admission is free, parking is free, and fun is free.

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