Merry Tatismas: Padres fans gush over the return of a franchise player

Mar 8, 2023; Peoria, Arizona, USA; San Diego Padres outfielder Fernando Tatis Jr against the
Mar 8, 2023; Peoria, Arizona, USA; San Diego Padres outfielder Fernando Tatis Jr against the / Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

If there was ever a perfect time to quote the great Don Orsillo's famous line "sending the Friar Faithful into a frenzy!", the highly-anticipated return of Fernando Tatis Jr. to the Padres could be just that moment.

"Tatismas" has finally arrived the great city of San Diego, and while it won't snow, we're forecasting plenty of raining baseballs in the months to come. And to suggest Padres fans are excited about this would be understating things.

San Diego Padres fans celebrate the long-awaited return of Fernando Tatis Jr. to game action

So we know the fans are riled up about Tatis Jr.'s return, but what about the players? You better believe they are, too.

We can't blame Juan Soto for expressing excitement about this. With Tatis Jr. back in the lineup, Soto (who has mostly struggled in the early going) should see plenty more pitches to hit in a bottomless lineup that goes at least six deep with Xander Bogaerts, Manny Machado, Soto, Tatis Jr., Nelson Cruz and Jake Cronenworth. Now, that's lit.

Tatis Jr., known by his nickname "El Niño", certainly lives up to that billing with his pure energy and passion, which he wears on his sleeve every night. San Diego and the Friar Faithful have missed the 24-year-old's youthful exuberance during a sluggish start to the 2023 season.

Hopefully, the teams fortunes will shift for the best in 2023 with Tatis Jr.'s return, as well as the impending return of ace Joe Musgrove to the Padres' rotation this weekend, which should not be downplayed amidst the excitement of Tatis' season debut.

It's an exciting time to be a fan of the San Diego Padres. To all those who observe, may you have a very Merry Tatismas! Here's to getting this season back on track and seeing "El Niño" on the diamond once again.