Tag Archives: Baseball

Game Seven

I saw my first Major League Baseball game in Riverfront Stadium when I was 18 months old and saw Pete Rose play as a Philadelphia Philly. My mom tells me that I watched the game more attentively than some grown-ups. Growing up family vacations often included an MLB game along the way. As a youngster we visited Wrigley Field, old Comiskey, Busch Memorial, the Astrodome, and Arlington Stadium. Only one of those still stands today. As an adult, I drove 14 hours on the second to last weekend of the 2008 season to watch a game in old Yankee Stadium. I have seen Cy Young winners, MLB MVPs, Hall of Fame players. However, nothing topped the ball game I saw on Friday night.

Early friday morning my brother text me “Want to meet me in St. Louis?” On Thursday night with a miraculous victory the St. Louis Cardinals  forced a game seven in the World Series agains the Texas Rangers. St. Louis was just seven hours away from my home town. My brother has two baseball loving sons. There hadn’t been a World Series game seven since 2002. I am a serious baseball fan who had traveled longer to see a less important ball game. All things considered, how could I not meet my brother and go to St. Louis.

I didn’t have a tooth brush, a change of clothes or my favorite Cardinals t-shirt but I left work just before nine o’clock friday morning drove to Memphis, Tennessee to drive to St. Louis with Walt and his sons, Rhett and Reece. Snapper even joined the crew heading to the game. By the end of the trip Rhett and Reece wanted to trade me in for Snapper as their aunt.

We arrived in St. Louis just before 4:30 on Friday afternoon. The streets were crowed with cars and fans headed to the game. We walked around just a little bit before the gates opened. The best thing about visiting a ball park is walking up the concourse ramp and seeing the green of the field for the first time. Seeing the World Series logo painted on the field game me goose bumps. Busch Stadium is one of the best ball parks to watch baseball in the MLB. The whole city of St. Louis is dedicated to the Cardinals organization. We were there… Game 7 of the World Series… a Champion would be crowned at the end of the night and we were there to see it!

We watched the game from the upper deck along the first baseline. These were not bad seats. We ate hotdogs, pretzels, and I had a Sprite along with a few Anheuser-Busch products. We all had St. Louis ball caps on… wait Rhett had on a Texas Ranger cap.  The images of seeing the players take the baseball diamond on defense and the hits produced throughout the game will be memories that will never leave my head.

As the ninth inning started Reece was standing on the stadium seat peering around the head of the fans in front. The last out got even closer. I thought with a four run lead the Cardinals would pull this game out, but after Texas lost their lead the night before five different times, no one would prematurely celebrate victory. The last batter drove the ball into deep left field everything froze for a second as Allen Craig who hit a home run earlier in the game positioned himself under the ball. As he caught the ball the stadium erupted, confetti flew everywhere and the players pilled on top of one another as fire works blasted beyond the out field stands.

Simply being a baseball fan watching the game gave me joy. I have always wanted to go to a World Series. I think every fan does. However, after family vacations to St. Louis and watching the incredible comeback of the Cardinal which started in early September this night will not soon maybe never be topped by another sporting event. Thank you Walt, Rhett, Reece, and Snapper for game seven! Thank you St. Louis for being a great baseball town!

Limited Interest

Growing up, my parents made sure we were exposed to the world beyond Carroll County, Mississippi. It was very important for us to be interested in culture, science, politics, art, and other things of the sort. While here in New York I am reminded of their efforts. However, I am here to say I have limited interests. I am interested in baseball, space/flight, and climbing tall things.

In the sea of humanity that is New York City, I seem to be drawn to the same everyday things that I am at home. Chris and I took the train to Queens for a Mets game on Saturday. It was amazing how when we got off the train we managed to find two rockets at the New York Hall of Science. We didn’t even know they existed and we were drawn to them like a moths to a flame. We walked like a mile out of our way to see what these Gemini-Titan and Mercury-Atlas were doing in Flushing Meadows.

On Sunday, we visited the USS Intrepid. Yes, you are thinking that it is a Navy vessel, I am branching out. Nope, the USS Intrepid is a sea, air, and space museum. They had some fantastically awesome aircraft. My favorite thing on board was an exhibit called 27 Seconds, dedicated to the Apollo 1 astronauts. It gave an outline of what happened the day Grissom, Chaffee, and White were killed in a capsule fire during the plugs out test. At the end of the exhibit there was a long numbered line, 1 – 27. From the time the fire started until the astronaut lives were claimed by the fire it was only 27 seconds.  As the seconds ticked away on the number, I tried to read the events of the accident, but the 27 seconds flew by.

Baseball, we are going to visit the new Yankee Stadium today. We went to a Mets game on Saturday. That is surely something my parents succeeded in teaching me about, baseball. We went on many summer vacations that included ballgames. Our first ballgame as a family was in Cincinnati to see Johnny Bench play the Phillies. That year the Phillies had picked up a guy called Pete Rose. I was four and more into the game than the grown ups. I think I have loved baseball since!

So far, my favorite activity this vacation has been the Top of the Rock, the observation deck at Rockefeller Plaza. I was amazed! At Rockefeller you get a great view of the Empire State Building and Central Park. I didn’t have my camera with me to snap hundreds of photos, so I just soaked it all in. Looking to the south, I thought wow there is seemingly a hole in the sky line, which we all know there is something missing. Especially with the recent political news of a mosque being built at Ground Zero, it is like the whole thing was just erased. My eyes drifted to the New Jersey shoreline to see the Statue of Liberty. She is still standing, and I am sure what is good will prevail in the end.

Chris and I are making memories while we are here in New York. I could have stood at the top of Rockefeller Plaza for hours. It was amazing! We ran into a kid at M&M World near Times Square. He was running from candy bin to toy bin begging his parents to buy him stuff. He proudly proclaimed, “I want MEMORIES!” I think the young chap had it mixed up. Memories are the things you don’t have to pay for in New York City. What he was begging for was souvenirs. Just like the souvenirs I brought home from my childhood vacations, his souvenirs will be gone sooner than the memories of him running through M&M World like a banshee! One of my most cherished baseball memories is when the whole family, including Will went to a baseball game at Busch Stadium in St. Louis.

Thanks mom and dad for creating in me an adventurous spirit. However, I am sorry I have limited interests.