It was the best of times, it was the worst of times. OK, I may have borrowed that but it describes my trip to two baseball games recently.
I enjoy baseball, especially games played with real wood. There is something about the sound of the ball coming off of a wood bat that is pleasing to the ear unlike the annoying ping of the ball coming off of an aluminum bat.
So on consecutive days I had plans to go to a Cardinal game followed by a Sikeston Bulls game. For those who don't know, the Sikeston Bulls are a group of college players who play in a wood bat league known as the KITTY League.
Of course, before I even walk into Busch Stadium I am in a foul mood because of the parking situation. Who in their right mind charges $25 to park? Of course, my companions and I see many parking spots just a few hundred yards from Busch Stadium and decide to pay the outrageous fee. Of course, once we gave them the money they instructed us to park on the other side of the parking lot, which coincidentally is also on the other side of St. Louis. So after walking what felt like six miles I am exhausted before I can even enter the stadium.
On the other hand the following evening I pulled into the parking lot at VFW Stadium and paid nothing. I parked just a few yards from the entrance and walked to my seat without so much as a bead of sweat. Advantage Bulls.
Of course, once I sat down at Busch Stadium I was thirsty and a bit hungry. Of course, we all know the price of anything at Busch Stadium is outrageous so I told my wife to go get some peanuts and a soda. Notice I said my wife because she handles our finances and I wasn't sure that we would have enough in our savings account to handle such a purchase.
An evening later though I handed a nice young lady $3 and she gave a bag of peanuts and Coke. It's funny but the peanuts tasted the same and the Coke wasn't watered down like at Busch. Advantage Bulls.
Then there was the game itself. Well, it is actually hard to remember the Cardinal game because of the drunk fellow behind us telling stories of childhood which apparently included stops in St. Louis, Chicago, North Carolina and I think the moon at one point. The guy couldn't have been a day over 40 but somehow he saw Babe Ruth play.
At the Bulls game there is no alcohol sold so instead of a drunken idiot making a fool of himself there are people actually watching a baseball game. Amazing I know.
In both games the home team won by a run and while over 40,000 people cheered on the Cardinals, just over 100 were there to witness a game that was just as entertaining.
Now I know the level of baseball is better at the professional level but as far as the game itself baseball is baseball. I can attest that the Bulls game was just as exciting as the Cardinals.
I always thought Southeast Missouri and in particular Sikeston was supposed to be a baseball area, but if that is the case, why aren't more people checking out the Bulls? Oh well, you can spend a fortune watching the Cardinals but for my money I'll stick with the Bulls.