O'Malley's sons, Kevin and Brian, along with cousins Peter and Tom Seidler, are in their first full season as majority owners of a Padres franchise whose largely sad-sack history pales next to the Dodgers' storied past.
They've pledged to turn the Padres into consistent winners while following the O'Malley traits of hard work; first-class treatment of employees, players and fans; commitment to the community; and keeping as low a profile as possible.
It's been eight months since the O'Malleys and Seidlers were introduced as owners, along with local businessman Ron Fowler, the executive chairman and the team's control person.
Since then, San Diegans have heard barely a peep from the O'Malleys and Seidlers. They've largely deferred to Fowler, a longtime San Diego civic leader who made a fortune from his beer distributorships.
"The next generation," as Peter O'Malley calls the four, spoke with The Associated Press in the owner's box at Petco Park during opening week, their first group interview since they were introduced at a news conference on Aug. 29.
They've been quiet in part because they've been busy relocating to San Diego and, well, that's what they learned from Peter O'Malley.
"For me personally, a lot of it just comes from growing up within the Dodgers' organization," Kevin O'Malley said.
The O'Malley-Seidler group takes over at a critical time. Spurred on by social media and blogs, the fan base is riled mostly because the Padres added little to a team that played well the second half of last season but still finished fourth in the NL West, 18 games behind the World Series champion San Francisco Giants. It was their fourth losing record in five seasons.
Still grating on some fans are the empty promises of the two previous ownership groups and worries that star third baseman Chase Headley might soon join former Padres stars Jake Peavy and Adrian Gonzalez in being traded because of financial considerations.
The party line in the offseason was that the new ownership wasn't going to spend money just for the sake of spending money. Then the Padres started 2-10, although they followed that with a three-game sweep of the rival Dodgers in Los Angeles.
"We accept the responsibility that fans and media will judge ownership and the team on a day-to-day basis," Peter Seidler said." We are patient people. We're not building something that's going to last for a week or a month or a year. We're working to build something that's going to last year after year after year. I like fans that are demanding, personally."
"Passion," Seidler said.
The four members of the next generation range in age from 36 to 52. Three of them have MBAs. All four worked in various capacities while Peter O'Malley owned the Dodgers, from ushering at Dodger Stadium to interning in the PR department to stuffing programs for spring training games at Vero Beach to later working at minor league affiliates.
At 52, Peter Seidler is the oldest. Even though he heads the group, he doesn't have an office at Petco Park. He is a managing partner of Seidler Equity Partners, a family-oriented investment firm based in Southern California that manages equity capital with a market value of approximately $1.5 billion.
Tom Seidler, 45, is the only bachelor in the group, lives in downtown San Diego and has joined the Rotary Club and the Downtown Partnership. He has extensive experience in the minor leagues, most recently serving as president and general manager of the Class A Visalia Rawhide.
Kevin O'Malley, a 37-year-old father of four, played baseball for three seasons, primarily at catcher, while attending Penn. He is the founder of Carmelina Capital Partners, and with Tom Seidler co-founded and is co-owner of Top of the Third, Inc., which owns and operates the Rawhide.
Brian O'Malley, 36, is a vice president of O'Malley Seidler Partners and a minority owner of Top of the Third.
The Seidlers are among the 10 children of Peter O'Malley's sister, Terry, and her late husband, Roland.
The O'Malley family was interested in re-buying the Dodgers when they were sold in a bankruptcy auction, until the bidding zoomed past $1 billion. The team eventually went for $2 billion to a group that includes Magic Johnson.
"We never felt the stars were close to being aligned in a way that made sense for us," Peter Seidler said. "In contrast, the timing was coincidental that the Padres would become available. But I can tell you it's the only franchise of the 30 that the four of us would have been excited to go after and make the long-term commitment, moving here and moving our families here. The community has been magnificent welcoming us, inviting us to different things, events, to join organizations that are meaningful in the community, and of course, many Padres fans have been very forthcoming with their advice on what to do with the franchise as well. We're listening."
In a phone interview from his Los Angeles office, Peter O'Malley said his first question to the four when they expressed interest in buying the Padres was: "Are you all going to move there and be involved? And one, two, three, four, they said 'Yes.' I said, 'OK, let's talk.'
"They're not doing it as a hobby. They're not doing it as something fun. They're doing it with a serious approach," said O'Malley, whose father, Walter, moved the Dodgers from Brooklyn to Los Angeles before the 1958 season. "As far as them individually, they're all grounded, good young men and they grew up with the father and grandfather in the business. Instinctively, they know what is right, what is wrong. I really think mistakes will be at a minimum, but we all make mistakes. They'll do a solid job long term. They didn't buy it to flip it; they did it to live there for a long time. My sister Terry and I are very proud of them."
Peter O'Malley said he and his sister have invested in the Padres, too.
The advice he gives his sons and nephews is free, with a caveat.
"They've asked me very honest, significant questions and I've given my view. However, the responsibility is theirs, not mine," Peter O'Malley said.
Coincidentally, Fowler met Walter and Peter O'Malley in 1972 when the brewery he was working for took over the beer sponsorship for the Dodgers.
"They were really quality people, good people," said Fowler, 68. "This is a case where the heritage is great and the individuals that are part of that family are great guys."
Fowler was part of the minority ownership group under Jeff Moorad, whose attempt to buy the Padres on a layaway plan was blocked by fellow owners, forcing majority owner John Moores to put the team back on the market. Moorad was never able to convince people he had the money to buy the team. Moores and Moorad also walked away with the bulk of $200 million in upfront money from a $1.2 billion, 20-year deal with Fox Sports San Diego, leaving many fans wondering if the new owners are too hamstrung financially to improve the roster.
The new owners say money is available if general manager Josh Byrnes, who like CEO and president Tom Garfinkel is a holdover from the Moorad regime, feels the right deal needs to be made.
Fowler said the O'Malleys and Seidlers were "very button-down" during the purchase process, as opposed to others.
"These guys were slow and steady, not flashy," Fowler said. "That's not part of their makeup. They're just very strong, honorable, capable individuals. Peter especially is very entrepreneurial. I would think it might describe all four."
The Seidlers and O'Malleys said having Fowler as the control person was logical.
"We're new here," Kevin O'Malley said. "We have a lot of work to do to learn about the community, about San Diego baseball. Ron's been here, he lived it. We work very, very well with him. It was an easy decision."
In nearly 50 years of O'Malley ownership, the Dodgers won six World Series and 13 NL championships before Peter O'Malley sold them to Rupert Murdoch in 1998.
By comparison, this is the Padres' 45th season and they're on their sixth ownership group. They've lost the only two World Series they've played in, and have had only 13 winning seasons.
They've been better-known for pratfalls such as Roseanne Barr screeching through the national anthem in 1990 and club president Chub Feeney flipping off two fans carrying a "Scrub Chub" banner on Fan Appreciation Night in 1988. Feeney resigned the next day.
The O'Malleys and Seidlers hope they can bring stability.
"We have new friends here that are open and honest with us and tell us what they think," Kevin O'Malley said. "We hear them and we care."
They've seen good weeks and bad weeks; good years and bad years.
Baseball is in their blood, and, ultimately, they know that attention to even the smallest details and being friendly only go so far.
"We've got to put W's on the field," Peter Seidler said. "You mix up all the advice we hear from fans, it comes down to, it's much more fun to go to baseball games when the club's winning."
Allegiances have already changed.
On their first day, someone hung a "Beat LA" towel in the executive offices.
"That's sill proudly hanging in my office," Tom Seidler said.
"These guys will be here for 30 years," Fowler said. "I hope I'm here for 30 more years, too."