Showing posts with label St. Louis Cardinals. Show all posts
Showing posts with label St. Louis Cardinals. Show all posts

Thursday, August 26, 2010

St. Louis Cardinals Arch Statue

Across from the parking lot with a small baseball field that is in front of Busch Stadium there is an arch statue decorated with a St. Louis Cardinals theme. I saw it when in St. Louis earlier this month. I think it was outside of the Starbucks.

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Baseball's Gateway to the West Exhibit at the Arch

In St. Louis this week I was sad to miss there being a game in town by a day, especially since the Cubs were coming to town the next day. However, I still ended up happening upon the Baseball Gateway to the West exhibit. The exhibit is in the Museum of Westward Expansion, which is in the visitor's center under the Arch. Access to this museum is free, as they only charge if you want to see a movie or take a tram up to the top of the Arch.

The exhibit is pretty interesting, although I didn't get a chance to really explore it due to chasing little ones around being the first priority this trip. The exhibit was basically a sort of history of baseball in St. Louis and I assume it led to the conclusion that St. Louis playing a roll in baseball spreading to the Western USA. There was some cool stuff on display such as World Series memorabilia, uniforms, and baseballs. They had a fun display with baseballs and marks to show how the ball is held to throw different pitches. There was also a Knothole wall similar to the one in the Cactus League exhibit. Not as cool as the old Cardinals Hall of Fame that was housed with the International Bowling Hall of Fame across from Busch Stadium, but still a nicely put together little exhibit. Unfortunately, the exhibit is only temporary, but it does go until October 31, 2010.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Game 27: St. Louis Cardinals 6 @ Houston Astros 11

We got to Minute Maid Park several hours early since we got done with the Nolan Ryan Museum early and did not end up in as much traffic as we had expected. This ended up being a great thing because we ended up in the Main Team Shop, which is in the old Union Station. It is really cool how they preserved the Union Station and blended it into being part of the ballpark. In here they have some exhibits of Astros memorabilia related to the recent history of the Astros now celebrating their 10th season at Minute Maid Park.

After exploring the old Union Station part of the ballpark we still had an hour before the park opened. We took care of picking up our tickets at will call. We had tickets to the game already for in the 300 section, but we had tickets for the 110 section waiting for us. Marj, who got us into the Diamond Club at Nationals Park, worked at Minute Maid Park before Nationals Park and told her old boss about us, which led to us getting closer seats. We also got a bag of goodies, which included a Pink in the Park Astros t-shirt and wristband, a cool Lone Star Series hat, and a magnet schedule. The really cool thing in the bag was a little baggie of dirt from Minute Maid Park. Yes, dirt is very exciting if it is from a ballpark in my opinion. Also, we got much needed Astro stickers in the bag. None of the souvenir places in the park had stickers, so it was great that we ended up with one to keep the car up-to-date with the ballparks we have been to.

Minute Maid Park was an enjoyable place to take in a game. It has a good atmosphere even with it being almost half Cardinals fans for this game. Some people do not like baseball being played indoors, but having gone to so many Diamondback home games it just seems natural to us. Not only does it pretty much guarantee there will not be a rain delay or rain out, but it makes the game much more enjoyable with its air conditioned comfort. Mik loved this park just for being indoors. He does not much care about the air conditioning, but growing up in Arizona has made him a fan of indoor parks.

The game was pretty exciting with lots of home runs (6), which included three hit by Astro players, so we got to see the train behind left field go back and forth down the track several times. The first hit of the game was a homer by DeRosa of the Cardinals in the second inning. In the bottom of the inning the Astros' Pence got the Astros first hit of the game in the form of a two-run homer (Blum was on base due to being walked). The Astros them kept the lead the rest of the game adding a run in both the 4th and 5th innings.

The bottom of the 7th and top of the 8th were big scoring innings with each team scoring 5 runs. The Astros got 4 of their runs with a Grand Slam by Carlos Lee. Now we have finally seen a Grand Slam on the trip. I have never seen one in person at a Major League game, although I have seen two in one game at a Tucson Sidewinders game. We have been hoping the whole trip to at least see a Grand Slam. Now if we could only witness a no-hitter.

Monday, June 8, 2009

Accessibility Review: Busch Stadium

At Busch Stadium we easily found a handicap spot in the parking lot parking across the street from the centerfield entrance to Busch Stadium. Arriving early was definitely good for this game because while we did get a parking spot no trouble there definitely were already a good amount of crowds lining up to get in and it was still half an hour until the gates would open.

Getting around Busch Stadium is not too hard, as there is an elevator or two, but they seem quite far apart and you do a lot of walking sometimes the wrong direction you want to go to be able to use them. This works fine for us, but it does not much help those that need it because they cannot walk far. They do have some escalators, too, but they are not obvious to find and obviously not useful for the wheelchair. Lastly, there is ramps, but I recommend avoiding them if you are going from top to bottom or bottom to top, as it is a long way up and down and we wasted a lot of time on that and it Dad and I only made it back to our seats before the game started because we found the escalators to go up.

The handicap section is all wheelchair spots, so you get folding chairs for the rest of those in the group. There was no staff person in our section until almost game time, but it was easy to find the chair piles in each section to get them ourselves. The chairs were actually decent folding chairs even.

The line of sight from our seats in section 341 was pretty good, as we could see the whole field and the scoreboard. The only issue was that the bar got in the way if you did not get right up to it or at least that was the only way I could see the pitcher because I am short.

Overall it was a good accessible experience, however, I imagine it would have been a pain if Mik had come with Dad and I to explore the first level since it was so crowded with people. The store itself was pretty annoying since not only did people crowd it, but pretty much every path was barely big enough for the wheelchair to fit through.

Sunday, June 7, 2009

Smashed Pennies: Busch Stadium

Busch Stadium has a self-serve penny smashing machine like you see most places, but they also have an attended one near the kids entertainment area (I think it is called Ford something at this park). At the attended spot we finally found the 2009 Baseball Penny Books. I had been keeping both Mik and my pennies in a 2008 one I got last season. Now we each have a 2009 one to keep all the ones from the All the Ballparks trip.

The attended machine has limited edition designs in that they tend to have new designs every year. They sell the set of 2 for $2, but the Penny Man (the guy that attends the machine) was nice enough to give us the sets for free with the purchase our the penny books, which were in themselves a good deal at only $5 each. One design says 2009 Season and has the Cardinals logo. The other is in honor of Busch Stadium being the host for the 2009 All Star Game and has the Arch logo for this year’s All Star Game.

This morning I organized the pennies from the trip so far into each of our 2009 penny books. Below is them in the book so far. Mik's has one less because he did not find a design he liked at the Mall of America and I learned too late that we could have gotten Twins pennies there if we had gone to the right place.

Car Stickers Update: St. Louis Cardinals

Yeah, the car only had the American League side ahead for a day. I am definitely a National League fan, so it is nice to keep that side tied or ahead, but it was behind one sticker before the White Sox game when Dad put the sticker on before we even went to the ballpark until after the Cardinals game when he put the Cardinals one on. The Cardinals one is a one of the more interesting ones because it has the bird holding a bat.

Kj’s Baseball Collection: Home of Your St. Louis Cardinals

At Busch Stadium the only ballpark I found was a Home of Your St. Louis Cardinals ball. It is much like the Chase Field one and I have also seen a similar one at one other ballpark, but I forget which as that ballpark also had a more interesting design. I thought it was a fun unique design when I got the Chase Field one, but now that I have seen it done in the same style at three ballparks it seems boring. It was, however, still the best Cardinals one, as I did not even spot an All Star one until later in the kiosks, but I decided to take Mik’s logic and not get one since we are not going to the All Star Game.

The Home of Your St. Louis Cardinals ball says that on one side. The whole ball has the street layout of the downtown St. Louis area surrounding the ballpark with a giant Cardinals logo to mark the ballpark. Another side says St. Louis, Missouri, which I guess is for those that forgot what city they came to see the Cardinals play at home. It is not like they are called the Missouri Cardinals and the non-baseball fan might not know what city in Missouri the team plays. The other side has a large Cardinals bird with bat logo.

Mik’s Mini Bat Collection: Cardinals Bird Logo

Mik choose the dark blue mini bat with the Cardinals logo with the two Cardinal Birds perched on a bat. I offered for him to also get the All Star Game 2009 one, but he said he did not want it because we are not actually going to the All Star Game.

Mik Food Scrapbook: Busch Stadium

The food selection at Busch Stadium is pretty bland, especially for it being one of the newer parks. You can get the typical ballpark stuff and little else. There are a decent amount of options, but it is frustrating to search them out, as many of the stands have pretty much identical menus despite having different names. The other frustrating thing is the more interesting options (BBQ, specialty fires, Mexican) are on the level you enter on and the 4th level that we stat on had all that normal stands and a Hardees and that was it. The only thing sort of unique we found for this ballpark were specialty fires, which they had available with garlic, cheese, or St. Louis seasoning.

I got a pizza, but it was pretty overcooked and bad tasting from also sitting around awhile despite the deception of it being hot when you get it at the stand. I also got St. Louis Seasoned fries. These are sort of spicy, but a flavorful spicy. The seasoning is like that used often for peel and eat shrimp. I do not like spicy/hot foods much, but the flavorful stuff like this is good. Mik is totally not into spicy, so he passed on taste testing this. He also passed on the pretzel, but he did not miss anything with that, as half of it was cold when Mom brought it back and the concession stand was right behind our seats, so it is not like she brought it from the other side of the park and it also was not cold out.

The only thing Mik tried was a Hot Dog. Dad got it from the concession stand. Mik says it ranks among the lower quality of hot dogs he has had on the trip so far. Mom brought one back from a hot dog cart and that one looked way better and Mom said it was good. Mik’s looked dried out much like the pizza quality while Mom’s looked fresh and juicy. Mik did not try Mom’s though because he only likes hot dogs with ketchup and she put mustard and other stuff on it. He did agree that it probably would have been an enjoyable option if he was not already full, as he actually did finish his hot dog, so it was not one of the worst like the Twins one he only ate half of.

Saturday, June 6, 2009

Game 10: Colorado Rockies 10 @ St. Louis Cardinals 1

Today we drove down to St. Louis from Chicago. Mom tagged along and Dad got her a ticket right next to us yesterday when he called to get her a ticket. Originally she was supposed to join us for a few days in July to go to the World of Coca Cola on her birthday and then the Braves game, but she already found out that she would not be able to join us then. Thus when the chance came to join us this weekend she did this as an alternate. She does need to be back to catch a flight in the evening tomorrow, though, so we are skipping the Field of Dreams and going straight back to Chicago. We decided it was more worth it to have Mom go with to a game than see the Field of Dreams. Plus Mik will be happy for more in Chicago time.

Before the game we set up the tent at the KOA as it was pretty much on the way. We still ended up at the game half hour before the gates opened. We killed the time by walking over to the old Bowling Museum, which is now a Nike apparel shop with St. Louis Cardinals clothing including a lot of 2009 All Star stuff. Mom got Mik a zip up sweatshirt with the All Star logo and me a t-shirt with the All Star Logo.

The game was pretty good, although quite windy. The seats were in a good location. Dad and I walked over trying to find some food options, but found that most of the places have different names, but the exact same menu. Basically very little variety, especially for things without meat and the pizza I ended up getting was crap.

This was the first of three games in a row we will see the Rockies play in. They won this one 10 to 1 including three homers with two being by the same player. The Cardinals did at least get one run on the board with a homer and of course it had to be when I went to the restroom and I missed the celebration fireworks. Overall interesting game to watch. Mik and Dad were disappointed as they wanted the Cardinals to win since the Rockies are in the Dbacks division, but I wanted the Rockies to win since the Cardinals are in the Cubs division (seriously I really doubt Dad's devotion to being a Cubs fan).