Kevin Towers, who spent 14 seasons as general manager of the San Diego Padres and another five in the same role with the Arizona Diamondbacks, passed away today from thyroid cancer at 56.
Towers was diagnosed with the disease back in 2016, after being admitted to a hospital with fluid in his lungs. Unfortunately for Towers and the rest of his family, Towers would die just 14 months after being diagnosed with the cancer.
The former Padres farmhand played seven seasons as a minor-league pitcher, never getting the call to the majors. But, soon after his playing days, Towers became a scout for the organization from 1989-91, and after a quick stop with the Pittsburgh Pirates, he became scouting director for the Padres.
Of course, he was promoted to general manager in ’95, where he would lead the Padres to four division titles and the ’98 World Series. He would later be let go from the Padres and take over the Diamondback’s general manager position a year later.
Arizona would win 94 games that season, but never saw any sustained success with Towers as GM, and would eventually be asked to step down and offered a different role in the organization – which he declined.
Tower’s influence on the current game is apparent and can be found all over the league, from front offices like the Cubs and Theo Epstein, who said, “He was the best. We are so much better for having him in our lives.”
Or dugouts like in Houston with A.J. Hinch who shared this after Game 4 of the World Series,” [Towers] means a lot to me. He means a lot to the people within the game for many, many years.”
And even former players, like Padres great Trevor Hoffman who let his emotions come out after finding out he would be inducted in the Baseball Hall of Fame.
Tower’s impact on baseball, makes him nothing short of baseball-lifer, and Towers wouldn’t want it any other way.