I Don’t Care If I Never Get Back

Michael Wacha

Michael Wacha

Anne has been singing take me out to the ballgame for a while and last night I finally did. This week features the Cardinals last regular season home stand. So, it was now or never time. The game was with the Milwaukee Brewers, who are battling it out with the Reds for NL Central cellar preeminence. It was a beautiful night for a ballgame, what with a gibbous moon dominating clear skies and a very comfortable 72 ̊F throughout most of the game. Wacha was our starter and as he frequently does, he started rough; giving up three runs in the first, but the Cards came back with back-to-back home runs, for a 4-3 lead. The Redbirds went on to pad that lead with a 7-3 final score.

Let me root, root, root for the home team,
If they don’t win it’s a shame.
For it’s one, two, three strikes you’re out,
At the old ball game

We had pretty good seats, second row, just fair, along the left field line. It was readily apparent how many more balls are hit to that field, than anywhere else that I have ever sat. Whenever a Cardinal hits a home run, fireworks are launched from above the centerfield scoreboard. After the quick in succession, two dingers, a cloud of spent gunpowder wafted its way across the field and mixed with the aroma of fried ballpark fare. It made for an interesting combination. There was a good crowd, not full, but still pretty good for a Thursday. We spoke with an amicable gentleman from south Florida. His wife was in town on business; he had tagged along to see the sights and took in the ballgame by himself. Behind us was a trio of college coeds who ran a steady patter throughout the game. The rest of our neighbors were the remaining regular season ticket holders, who quietly endured us Stub-Hub-bins.

As per usual, we took Metrolink. On the way downtown, I sat next to an elderly man and after we had gotten to talking, he admitted to me that he didn’t have a train ticket. By way of apology, he explained that his wife usually took care of that stuff, “I’m becoming more and more dependent upon her.” He got away with it, but I could see the relief on his face when we pulled up to the stadium. He had a printed Stub-Hub ticket too, but didn’t know what to make of that.

After the standing ovation for the last out and more fireworks, this time for a Cardinal victory, we trooped down to the train and entered the crush of people on the platform. This crowd seemed to be almost entirely college kids and when our train finally arrived we all pressed into the car. It smelled like team spirit. Since, I had been sitting for nine innings, I decided to stand, putting heads and elbows all around me as I swayed with the rhythm of the tracks. They all got off at WashU and tired of standing by then, sat down next to Anne. The drunks at the back of the car started to serenade us all, but our stop soon arrived. All-in-all it was a pleasant evening and all that could have been added was maybe some peanuts or Crackerjacks.

Leave a Reply