BERNIE MIKLASZ WATCH: AN ODE TO THE LAST SEASON AT BUSCH STADIUM



In this edition of Bernie Miklasz Watch we look at the article Bernie wrote on April 7, 2005 talking about the last season at Busch stadium. It’s a tough topic to cover without sounding too sappy.

Bernie starts off pretty dramatic:

It was like having a screen in front of the stage, with blankets covering the props, and the lights turned down low to keep the theater dim until it was time for the drama to begin.

Does it work? I guess. It’s pretty easy to reach the theater from the drama of baseball.

He keeps up the dramatic bent, but breaks out this awesome quote from George Will:

In a 1990 interview with the Post-Dispatch, political commentator and baseball observer George Will posed this acerbic question: “‘How did such a great and serious baseball town build such a hideous stadium?”

Excellent. This is really the core question of the history of Busch Stadium. How did such an eye sore and fan unfriendly place become home to the best fans in baseball?

He answers this a bit later:

And most of those fans will tell you: It isn’t the structure that makes a baseball stadium special. Cardinals fans from St. Louis and around the nation – the team once again has filled credit-card ticket orders from more than 40 states this season – know the baseball experience at Busch is more about people than building design.

Good point. I don’t think it goes as far as it should.


Bernie then moves on to talk a bit more about the history of Busch Stadium. There is a point he makes about the Beatles:

On Aug. 21, 1966, the Beatles played a concert at Busch and drew 23,000 fans. Granted, it was raining when the Beatles played, but still … John, Paul, George and Ringo were no match for, say, the Milwaukee Brewers on a Monday night in June.

Perfect. Now that draws the comparison to the best fans in baseball and brings it home.

He gets a little sappy at the end:

The interaction with fellow fans and Cardinals players is stronger than stadium concrete. The bond between a grandparent holding a grandchild’s hand as they walk together through the Busch gates is more powerful than steel. The memories can hold any stadium together in our imagination, even after it’s gone.

Tear jerker, sure, but the obvious one.

Score: 6 out of 10.