Bernie Miklasz has an article talking about something not many people consider. How soon and how are new baseball players accepted by the fans when they come to a new baseball team. Bernie looks at the new St. Louis Cardinals and talks about how accepting the fans are and how accepting they’ve been in the past.
St. Louis has the best baseball fans in the country. It’s hard to argue with this point when so many players and managers agree.
Bernie talks about the aspect of St. Louis fans accepting new players. He starts off with a great line:
In a grand baseball town that cherishes nostalgia and favorite-son players, it isn’t always easy being the new guy.
What a great topic for an article. He continues by discussing two players who haven’t felt the love in St. Louis: Tino Martinez and Royce Clayon. His explanation is right on and to the point.
Bernie touches on David Eckstein and quickly dispatches him with the talk of a “fireball” approach and less money being paid.
He then talks about Mark Grudzielanek, which is a touchy subject for most fans as he’s an ex-Cub. Bernie agrees that most fans won’t hold this against him.
Bernie then touches on Mark Mulder and really nails it:
Starting pitcher Mark Mulder may have a rougher transition because so much is expected of him.
Ding. He also talks about the future being traded for Mulder now.
Bernie then spends the most time talking about Yadier Molina who replaced Mike Matheny. This is a huge topic in St. Louis and Bernie really digs into it. He could have just limped by, but he shows up strong with observations like this:
It’s unusual for a defending league champion to rebuild most of its middle defense, but the Cardinals are doing it with changes at catcher, second base and shortstop.
Perfect. He follows up with local reaction to Yadier Molina’s slow start and some quotes from Tony La Russa.
Bernie finishes with a homerun:
In some respects, Molina taking over for Matheny is the Cardinals’ equivalent of Marc Bulger inheriting the Rams’ quarterback position from Kurt Warner. St. Louis fans are so loyal, they have a hard time letting go.
What an excellent comparison and one that makes it hit home for the fans. A great article all around.
Score: 10 out of 10.