Thoughts and observations from the region-wide holiday known as ‘Opening Day’.
I am genuinely afraid to mention the weather at this point, because I have a deeply rooted fear any good weather stretches in St. Louis are immediately followed by the wrath of Mother Nature. But holy hell, that’s the kind of day you order up off a menu. Many fans got a wicked head start on their farmer’s tan for the summer- sans the people that took their shirts off in Busch Stadium. Class, St. Louis. Class.
If you went to Shannon’s, Al’s or any of the other 10 bars surrounding Busch Stadium after the game and were able to get a beer- you should be receiving a medal from Mayor Slay in the mail this week. By my estimation (also confirmed on Facebook) it looks like each place had one bartender for every 1750 potential patrons. I’m no Mr. Wizzard, but that seems like a formula for ‘missed $$$’ and sure enough we were in a cab to a less crowded bar within 10 minutes of trying to navigate Paddy-O’s.
The best shirt we saw all day: LINK HERE
The Cardinal Cowboy showed up… in a helicopter: LINK HERE
The Cardinal Cowboy then tries selling t-shirts for charity: LINK HERE
Even crappy cell phone cameras get good shots on Opening Day: LINK HERE
Let’s let the pros take over from here, Scott Rovak, everyone: LINK HERE
Big Mac received a huge ovation from the Busch Stadium crowd. The guy was busting the biggest smile you’ve ever seen and you could tell he was genuinely a new guy with a new lease on life riding that truck into the stadium. Tim McKernan believes that the McGwire reception was less than genuine on the part of many in the stadium. I agree with his thesis in principal, but I also believe that everyone was slightly buzzed, in a good mood, and we would have cheered for Carlos Brito if he would have been trotted around the warning track.
On second thought, I guess not. Damn InBev!
Albert Pujols was Albert Pujols and gave everyone that over-spent for their ticket their money’s worth. 25 years from now when AP is gone, I think one of his enduring legacies will be his uncanny ability to make ‘marquee games’ in the baseball season into actual marquee games by doing something memorable. When there is a record to be set, a title to be clinched or a moment on the calendar to mark- Albert Pujols comes through. Another reason he might be cracking the 300 million dollar barrier very, very soon.
Between the booze and the main scoreboard on the fritz, I about had a stroke induced. Perhaps the Busch Stadium people checked the scoreboard before Opening Day, perhaps they didn’t. But 4 years into what I’d assume to be a six figure investment is a little soon for that thing to be fried for 6 innings. If you were trying to check an out of town score, you probably had a bad acid flashback. Actually, that’s a pretty good selling point. Nevermind.
St. Louis is a much better town to live in during baseball season. People come downtown. The vibe is upbeat. The whole city does a 180. In fact, if the Cardinals weren’t here, we’d be no different than Billings or Des Moines. And that’s not a compliment.
Bo S from Denver checks in with this e-mail: “So i’m sure you’ve noticed, but the cardinals have not been to a world series in an odd-numbered decade since the 30s. the 50s, 70s, and 90s were not kind decades to us. I always had this in mind throughout the 00′s and somehow I knew we’d win a series in that decade. But now that we’re entering the 10s, I hope we aren’t destined by futility. For a team with 17 NL pennants, it does seem kind of odd that we haven’t been to a world series in an odd numbered decade in 76 years (1943). I’m not going to go so far as to call this a curse, because all cards fans know how truly miserable a cursed franchise can be. This is just a fluke, if you asked me, but I do think it’s relevant to take note of the cycles this organization goes through. Let’s hope this decade is the start of breaking that cycle and winning consistently.” Couldn’t agree more, Bo.