My 2020 question for Mo

I interrupt my Winter Warm-Up report series to bring you the following.  Once a year, the United Cardinals Bloggers bloggers are invited to submit questions to Cardinals President John Mozeliak.  Mr. Mozeliak then selects questions to answer.  I was honored to have one of my questions answered, and here is my question and Mo’s answer: […]

Those lazy, hazy, crazy days of summer

What a crazy last two weeks it’s been for the Cardinals.  The transactions alone these last two weeks have been dizzying. You couldn’t even fit them all on a scorecard. On July 29, Harrison Bader was optioned to Memphis, and hopefully there he will find the batting stroke he has lost.  Bader is still at Memphis, sadly enough for us ladies who enjoy watching him on the field. Perhaps the Cards will call him back for his bobblehead night on August 23. On July 30, the Cards claimed LHP Adalberto Mejia off waivers from the Angels.  The Cards designated Mejia for assignment on August 6, and the Angels reclaimed Mejia on August 8.  Easy come, easy go?

On July 31, Daniel Ponce de Leon was optioned to Memphis.  Matt Carpenter was assigned to Memphis for rehab on August 1 and was activated on August 4.  Yadier Molina was assigned to Memphis for rehab on August 1. On August 8, Yadi was sent to Springfield for rehab.  On August 3, Tyler O’Neill was put on the 10-day injured list for a wrist sprain. On August 4, RHP Mike Mayers was designated for assignment, Rangel Ravelo was optioned to Memphis, and Ryan Helsley was recalled (for the 6th time) from Memphis.  On August 6, Adalberto Mejia was designated for assignment, Mike Mayers was sent outright to Memphis, and the contract of RFP Junior Hernandez was purchased from Memphis.

The trade deadline was a disaster.  The only deal Mo made was to trade Jedd Gyorko to the Dodgers for cash, international cap space, LHP Tony Cingrani (who is on the injured list until after the season because of a shoulder injury and is a free agent after the season and RHP Jeffry Abreu (a minor league pitcher).  The team needed a starting pitcher and an outfielder and Mo obtained neither.  The only other acquisition was on July 29, when the Cards picked up LHP Zac Rosscup for cash from the Dodgers. Rosscup went straight to Memphis.  Some of my fellow bloggers and most of Cardinals Twitter agree it’s long past time for John Mozeliak to be fired.  If the Cardinals don’t make the playoffs for the fourth straight year, I believe Mo will go.

When last I wrote (July 25, 2019), the Cardinals were in a hot streak.  The bats were hot and so was the team. However, since then, things have taken a nosedive.  The Cardinals had a California road trip from August 3 – 7 and they didn’t win a single game.  The bats that once appeared to be on fire are back in the deep freeze.  Jack Flaherty pitched a masterful game yesterday with no win to show for it.  I believe the players are angry that Mo didn’t get help for them at the trade deadline, especially since they played so hard to get to first place. Their bats are on strike. The Cards are now 3 ½ games back in the NL Central.

If, after all of the above, you still want to see the Cardinals at Busch Stadium, the Cards return home tomorrow night for the shortest homestand of the year – 3 games.  The Dynamic Deal for Friday night’s game ($10.00 tickets with a free hot dog and soda, plus the promo item) was too good to pass up, so the son and I will be there. Here are all the homestand highlights:


(Friday, August 9—Sunday, August 11)

90s Night and Weekend of Wearable Giveaways Highlight Ninth Homestand

The Cardinals return to Busch for their shortest homestand of the season.  The brief homestand features a three-game weekend series against the Pittsburgh Pirates (August 9-11).

Friday, August 9, 2019 — Cardinals vs. Pittsburgh Pirates (7:15 p.m.)

TV: FOX Sports Midwest

Radio: KMOX 1120 AM, WIJR 880 AM (Spanish)

Gates open at 5:15 PM

Adult Tank Top Giveaway: 30,000 fans, ages 16 and older.  Presented by Cooper Tires / Dobbs Tire & Auto Center.

90s Night: With the purchase of a special Theme Ticket, fans will take home a 90’s-inspired Cardinals t-shirt.  Come early for a pregame concert of 90s hits by Proud Larry in Budweiser Terrace.  To purchase tickets, visit

Flashback Friday & Artifact Spotlight: Before every Friday home game, the Cardinals Museum hosts two presentations, one highlighting artifacts in the museum’s collection not currently on display at 3:00 & 3:30 PM and another featuring intimate and candid interviews with a former Cardinals player at 4 PM.  Today’s interview will be with INF Mike Tyson.  To purchase museum tickets, visit

Boots at Busch: 93.7 The Bull and the Cardinals welcome back Boots at Busch—a series of home games featuring live country music in a “battle of the bands” format.  Tonight’s battle features Kenna, Whisky Raccoons & Jessica Tipton and the Mud Flaps.  Performances begin at 5:35 PM in Budweiser Terrace.  Tickets are available for $10 at

50/50 Raffle: One lucky fan will receive 50% of the gross proceeds from today’s raffle ticket donations.  The other half will benefit Cardinals Care.  For more info and past winning raffle numbers, visit

Cardinals Care Stadium Auction: Auction tables will be located inside the Cardinals Club, UMB Champions Club and Redbird Club for fans and collectors to obtain specialty Cardinals items.

MLBPAA Auction: The MLBPAA will conduct a silent auction by Gate 1 and Gate 3 through the fifth inning.  Proceeds will benefit Cardinals Care and MLBPAA.

Saturday, August 10, 2019 — Cardinals vs. Pittsburgh Pirates (6:15 p.m.)

TV: FOX Sports Midwest

Radio: KMOX 1120 AM, WIJR 880 AM (Spanish)

Gates open at 4:15 PM

Skyline Mesh Back Hat Giveaway: 30,000 fans, ages 16 and older. Presented by Shane Co.

Baseball Card Pack Giveaway: 30,000 fans, all ages, entering with a ticket, courtesy of the Topps trading card company.

Saturday Signings at the Museum: Former Cardinals INF Mike Tyson will sign from 2-4 PM.  Visit for more information.

50/50 Raffle: One lucky fan will receive 50% of the gross proceeds from today’s raffle ticket donations.  The other half will benefit Cardinals Care.  For more info and past winning raffle numbers, visit

MLBPAA Auction: The MLBPAA will conduct a silent auction by Gate 1, Gate 3, and inside the Cardinals Club and Redbird Club through the fifth inning.  Proceeds will benefit Cardinals Care and MLBPAA.

Sunday, August 11, 2019 — Cardinals vs. Pittsburgh Pirates (1:15 p.m.)

TV: FOX Sports Midwest

Radio: KMOX 1120 AM, WIJR 880 AM (Spanish)

Gates open at 11:15 AM

Mystery Adult PKWY Socks by Stance, Inc. Giveaway: 30,000 fans, ages 16 and older.

Fredbird’s Birthday Party: With the purchase of a special Theme Ticket, fans will join Fredbird and friends for a pregame birthday party in Cunningham Corner.  Brunch and dessert will be provided and each guest will take home a Cardinals goodie bag!  Tickets are currently sold out.

Prairie Farms Kids Run The Bases: Fans ages 15 and under are invited to run the bases after the game (weather permitting).

Prairie Farms Ice Cream Sunday: Starting two hours prior to the game, fans and families can enjoy games, prizes and free North Star frozen treats in Ford Plaza (while supplies last).

50/50 Raffle: One lucky fan will receive 50% of the gross proceeds from today’s raffle ticket donations.  The other half will benefit Cardinals Care.  For more info and past winning raffle numbers, visit

MLBPAA Auction: The MLBPAA will conduct a silent auction by Gate 1, Gate 3, and inside the Cardinals Club and Redbird Club through the fifth inning.  Proceeds will benefit Cardinals Care and MLBPAA.

Thanks as always for reading! See you next time!


2019 United Cardinals Bloggers Blogger Day Report

The Cardinals organization invited the United Cardinals Bloggers to attend the ninth annual Blogger Day on July 13.  Usually, Blogger Day is held on Sunday afternoons, which allows the UCB and friends to meet for dinner on Saturday evening, but for some reason not explained to us, it was held on Saturday this year.

My son Phillip was my guest for Blogger Day. We rode the Metrolink over from Illinois and exited the train at the Stadium station.  I then picked up our tickets at the will-call window.  The gates opened at 4:15 PM. so we proceeded to gate 3. Saturday was a very hot day.  We waited in the hot sun for about 20 minutes.  When the bag checkers looked in my purse, they took my body spray away.  (Rose Quartz from Bath & Body Works, in case you’re interested. ). They said that anything that is in an aerosol bottle is not allowed.   I told them to at least let me spray some body spray on before they threw the bottle away.

The giveaway Saturday was a golf umbrella, and it was a good giveaway for such a hot day – the people in the stands were using their umbrellas to shade themselves from the sun.  We proceeded to party room 214.  When we got there, the employees were finishing up setting up the food.  We got some water to cool off and put our umbrellas in the closet.

My fellow bloggers streamed in and I spoke with several of them.  It’s always fun to catch up with my blogger friends that I only talk to on Twitter.  The food was looking (and smelling) really good. Here are some photos of the buffet:















Here is the menu for the Legends room, the party room where we were:


There were cones of popcorn and kettle-cooked chips with French onion dip for the chips on the tables for us to snack on. Phil and I figured out where John Mozeliak and Bill DeWitt were going to sit for the presentation, so we found seats near there so I could tape the presentation to use for this blog post.

Carson Shipley from the Cards’ communication department welcomed us to Blogger Day.  He spoke about the premium party room food spread and that there were 2 new concession items for us to try – the Budweiser Burger Bar and twisted topped pretzels.  Carson then turned over the proceedings to John Mozeliak and Bill DeWitt, III.

DeWitt acknowledged our contributions and said that we connect with passionate fans.  (And if bloggers aren’t passionate fans who write about their passion, then who is?)  DeWitt then continued with a report about the business side of the house.  Game attendance is good in spite of there being no playoff appearances in the last few years.

DeWitt then spoke about the phases of Ballpark Village.  Phase I is considered a success.  Phase II is bigger than Phase I.  The section being built on the left is a Live! by Lowe’s hotel.  The middle section is a health club building, which is behind the Busch II infield.  The Busch II infield had to be torn up for construction but should be ready for activities again in a couple weeks.

DeWitt then talked about One Cardinal Way, the apartment complex being built at the right of Ballpark Village.  The building will be 21 stories and half of the stories have been completed.  Above the parking deck, there will be a party deck with an infinity pool, a BBQ area, a workout room, etc.  DeWitt said that the complex is 35% preleased and he hopes it is sold out.  He thought some of us might be interested in renting apartments there and I said that I didn’t earn enough to afford an apartment there.

It was then John Mozeliak’s turn to speak.  Mo said he was nervous coming to the event because Blogger Day is usually in April at the beginning of the season.  There is more time to come up with hard questions. Mo’s sock game has evolved since the first few blogger events.  At first, Mo wore some really ugly argyle socks.  Once he was promoted to Vice President, he started wearing dark solid color socks. I guess he figured he had to dress more conservatively. This year, however, Mo wore no socks, as you will see in the photo.

Mo admitted that this year hasn’t gone as they had hoped.  The biggest inconsistency is offense and they are frustrated with the lack of production.  The team had a great stat in April, but in May, they fell off the cliff.  The injury bug bit and our best offensive hitter (Ozuna) is on the IL.  All of the offense has underperformed.

Since the team has changed pitching coaches, why is the offense bad?  Jeff Albert was brought in and Mo said he brought a steep curriculum to the group that should have been implemented better.

Mo stated that it’s not too late to make changes.  The players know this falls on them.  The staff met with the players over the All-Star break and they know they need to start performing.

Mo said that there are a lot of positives in the minor leagues, but they don’t want to make a lot of changes.  It has to be a strategy that makes sense.  Having the minor leaguers come up and just sit is not good for their career.

They wanted to get the second half of the season off to a good start, but the Cards lost the first game.  It looked like the last 6 to 8 weeks, very frustrating.  The players still believe in the team and so does Mike Shildt.  The next 2 weeks will tell the tale as to how they play.

Mo then talked about the trade deadline.  The trade deadline is now a true deadline and how other teams play with that, Mo doesn’t know.  The team’s response is to keep the pulse.  He’d like to say that everything is sunshine and roses, but the reality is, the team has to play better and he gets that.  He doesn’t think that there is no one move they could make at the trade deadline that could change the trajectory.

After that, it was time for questions and answers.  I will not report on that in this blog post because I had it all typed up Tuesday night (which took me 2 hours) and with one bad keyboard strike, it all disappeared into the Twilight Zone.  Most of my fellow bloggers have reported on the Q&A in depth by now anyway.  I will just report about the rest of the evening.

After the Q & A, I was hungry, so I got a bratwurst (with sauerkraut, of course!) and a BBQ beef brisket sandwich.  I saw a spot open at a table, so I asked the couple sitting at the table if anyone was sitting there, and they said no.  I started talking to them and discovered that the husband was a blogger and a fairly new one at that, for this was his first blogger event.   His name is Donald Glenn and you can view his blog here:  Cards On Deck.  Don is also on Twitter here:  (P.S.:  He needs some more followers.)

We had a great bartender in our suite named Aaron.  He delivered drinks in the suites and cleared away our food plates.  He was very personable and talked about Cardinals baseball with us.  We weren’t his ordinary customers, obviously.  Aaron worked as a beer vendor in the stands for 25 years before moving up to the party suites.  His catchphrase was “Ice cold beer – colder than my mother-in-law!” While we were in the party room, Aaron and the lady bartender in the party suite next door (which also had UCB folks in there) won customer service awards and got their photos taken. I decided to go to the bar outside the party rooms and get a Shock Top beer (or two – or three).  You can also get mixed drinks at the outside bar.

During the later innings, there was a very pleasant surprise – a SportsService employee rolled in a large cart of scrumptious desserts, which included containers of Ted Drewes Frozen Custard, two large cheesecakes, and assorted ice cream sundaes, along with some other desserts.  This is the first time that there has ever been a dessert cart at a blogger event.  I had a container of vanilla Ted Drewes custard and a slice of cheesecake.  Alas, the dessert cart was only in our party room for about 10 minutes – it must have had to move on to the other party rooms.

The bloggers must have brought the luck that night, for the Cardinals won that night and the next two nights as well.  I so enjoy the blogger event every year.  It’s a time to visit with old friends, reminisce about old friends who didn’t make it to the event, and meet new friends, plus enjoy a Cardinals baseball game.  Here’s a photo of all the bloggers – well, not all of them, for some of them left early.

My thanks to the Cardinals for their wonderful hospitality and I’m looking forward to next year’s Blogger Day! Thanks as always for reading and I’ll see you next time!


Some random thoughts and Homestand Highlights for August 13-19, 2018

Hello everyone!  Wouldn’t you agree that it is much more enjoyable to watch Cardinals baseball these days?  Since July 27, the date of my last post, the Cardinals have won 5 series in a row, including sweeping the Royals this weekend.  Matt Carpenter is on fire, and has hit 32 HR as of this writing.  His bat is as hot as the salsa he’s been eating.  He has to be in consideration for the National League MVP.  In a move before the trade deadline, Tommy Pham was traded to the Rays for a couple of prospects.  Pham, however, broke his foot 2 days later and will be out for a while.  This trade brought up Harrison Bader from Memphis and I have really enjoyed watching Bader play.  He has great range in the outfield, he can hit, and he runs very fast.  He’s easy on the eyes as well.

John Mozeliak picked up pitcher Tyler Ross, who was an All-Star in 2014, from the waiver wire.  Ross had to pitch today after Luke Weaver cut his right index finger opening an aluminum food container.

The wins have been great, but the injury train continues.  Dexter Fowler broke his foot, so Tyler O’Neill was brought up from Memphis.  However, O’Neill was felled by a groin injury (which was deemed “sensitive” by the team, leading to many wiseacres on Twitter saying he had the clap).  Adolis Garcia was brought up from Memphis to replace him.  Yairo Munez sprained his wrist, so Patrick Wisdom finally got a call up to the show, after 7 years in the minors.

Mike Shildt has done a great job with the lineup, keeping it consistent.  He also has put Yadi in the 2 slot, and it has paid off.  I understand that he does a great job at the post-game pressers, although I have yet to see one since hubby changes the channel after the game is over.  Hopefully the “interim” will be taken off of his title after this season.

The Cardinals had a happy flight home this afternoon and start a 7 game homestand starting tomorrow evening.  My son and I will be at Thursday night’s game, which is a T-shirt night.  I have been at 4 games this season, and I am 2-2, with the Cards losing the last two games I attended.  I’m hoping they win Thursday night.  This weekend is also Cardinals Hall of Fame weekend – Harry Brecheen, Ray Lankford and Vince Coleman will be inducted into the Cardinals Hall of Fame on Saturday.  Here are all the details for the upcoming homestand:

HOMESTAND HIGHLIGHTS (Monday, August 13—Sunday, August 19)

Hall of Fame Weekend and Military Appreciation Night Highlight Tenth Homestand of 2018

 ST. LOUIS, Mo., August 12, 2018 – The Cardinals return to Busch Stadium after winning all three series on their recent nine-game road trip.  The seven-game homestand kicks off with four games against the Washington Nationals (August 13-16) and concludes with a three-game series versus the Milwaukee Brewers (August 17-19).  The tenth homestand of the season is highlighted by the team’s fifth Hall of Fame Induction Class and second annual Pride Night. 

Monday, August 13, 2018 — Cardinals vs. Washington Nationals (7:10 p.m.)

Gates open at 5:40 p.m.

BBQ Theme Night: Come join us at Ballpark Village for the first ever BBQ Night, presented by Q in the Lou.  Fans who purchase a special Theme Ticket will get to sample some free BBQ and take home an exclusive Cardinals BBQ Apron.  We’re firing up the grills from 5:30-7:30 across the street in the Busch II infield.  For tickets, visit  #CardsTheme

Long Haul Bombers: The Long Haul Bombers, a collection of the world’s greatest softball home run hitters, will hold a softball home run hitting contest on the field starting at 6:00 p.m.

MLBPAA Auction: The MLB Players Alumni Association will conduct a silent auction by Gate 1 and Gate 3 through the fifth inning.  All proceeds will benefit Cardinals Care and the MLBPAA.

Tuesday, August 14, 2018 — Cardinals vs. Washington Nationals (7:15 p.m.)

Gates open at 5:45 p.m.

Sandlot Theme Night: One of America’s favorite baseball movies is turning 25 this year, and the celebration is coming to Busch Stadium! With the purchase of a special Theme Ticket, fans will get their choice between a Cardinals Ham bobblehead or a Cardinals Squints bobblehead. ‘Squints’ Palledorous will be on hand to meet and greet fans in Budweiser Terrace!  To purchase tickets, visit  #CardsTheme

Wainwright’s Winners: Adam Wainwright will host a group from Special Olympics Missouri for tonight’s game as part of his Wainwright’s Winners Player Ticket Program.

Boots at Busch: 93.7 The Bull and the Cardinals welcome back Boots at Busch—a series of home games featuring live country music in a “battle of the bands” format.  Tonight’s battle features Chasing GingerMars Transit and Postal Modern.  Performances begin at 5:35 p.m. in Budweiser Terrace.  Tickets are available for $5 to each Battle at Busch game at

Cardinals Care Stadium Auction: Auction tables will be located at Gates 1 and 3, inside the Cardinals Club, UMB Champions Club and Redbird Club for fans and collectors to obtain specialty Cardinals items while helping support the programs that Cardinals Care provides to youth in the community.  #CardsCare

Wednesday, August 15, 2018 — Cardinals vs. Washington Nationals (7:15 p.m.)

Gates open at 5:45 p.m.

Military Appreciation Theme Night: The Cardinals are proud to partner with FOX Sports Midwest to celebrate our troops and veterans on the second annual Military Appreciation Night.  Fans who purchased a special Theme Ticket will receive an exclusive camo Cardinals cap.  A portion of each ticket purchased will be donated to USO Missouri.  For tickets, visit  #CardsThem

Telecast To The Troops: FOX Sports Midwest presents This One’s For You, its annual Cardinals telecast to the troops which began in 2005.  FSM will conduct live interviews with soldiers from the Missouri Air National Guard’s 35th Engineer Brigade deployed in Buehring, Kuwait.  Family members and supporters of the 35th Brigade will be at Busch Stadium as well.

Dream Weavers: Luke Weaver will host a group from Children’s Advocacy for tonight’s game as part of his Dream Weavers Player Ticket Program.

MLBPAA Auction: The MLB Players Alumni Association will conduct a silent auction by Gates 1 and 3 through the fifth inning.  All proceeds will benefit Cardinals Care and the MLBPAA.

Thursday, August 16, 2018 — Cardinals vs. Washington Nationals (6:15 p.m.)

MLB Network Showcase National Broadcast (out-of-market only)

Gates open at 4:45 p.m.

T-Shirt of the Month Giveaway: 20,000 fans, ages 16 and older, will take home a t-shirt honoring Hall of Famer, Bob Gibson.  #CardsPromo

Autograph Night: Get free autographs from current and former Cardinals players, courtesy of Academy Sports + Outdoors.  Tyler O’Neill will sign 100 autographs in Budweiser Terrace for fans ages 15 and younger from 4:45-5:15.  Kids must have an autograph line ticket, which are free and are distributed in Budweiser Terrace.  Former Cardinals Scott Terry and Kerry Robinson will sign autographs for fans of all ages from 5:15-6:00.  Players subject to change.

Gateway Motorsports Racing Theme Night: Start your engines and race down to Busch Stadium!  All fans who purchase a special Theme Ticket will receive a racing-inspired Cardinals cap, plus a general admission pass to the INDYCAR Qualifying Night and the NASCAR K&N race at Gateway Motorsports Park on August 24, and a general admission ticket for the INDYCAR race on August 25.  For tickets, visit  #CardsTheme

Tsunami Waves: Carlos Martínez will host a group from the Puerto Rican Society of St. Louis for tonight’s game as part of his Tsunami Waves Player Ticket Program.

MLBPAA Auction: The MLB Players Alumni Association will conduct a silent auction by Gate 1 and Gate 3 through the fifth inning.  All proceeds will benefit Cardinals Care and the MLBPAA.

Friday, August 17, 2018 — Cardinals vs. Milwaukee Brewers (7:15 p.m.)

Cardinals Hall of Fame Weekend presented by Edward Jones

Gates open at 5:15 p.m.

Mystery Batting Practice Pullover Giveaway: 30,000 fans ages 16 and older, will be surprised at the gates when they discover which of their favorite Cardinal players they get to rep with an adult Cardinals Mystery BP Pullover, courtesy of Coca-Cola and Schnucks. #CardsPromo

Pride Theme NightJoin LGBT friends, family and allies as the Cardinals and Pride St. Louis partner to present the second annual Pride Night at Busch Stadium.  With the purchase of a special Theme Ticket, fans will receive an exclusive Cardinals t-shirt with a rainbow STL logo.  Additionally, a portion of each theme ticket sold will benefit Missouri Courage Scholarship, which is the first and largest state-wide LGBTQ scholarship organization in Missouri.  The Gateway Men’s Chorus will be performing God Bless America prior to the game as well. For more tickets, visit  #CardsTheme

Heart & Hustle Award Presentation: In a pregame ceremony, Harrison Bader will be presented with the MLBPAA 2018 Heart and Hustle Award.  The esteemed award honors active players who demonstrate a passion for the game of baseball and best embody the values, spirit and traditions of the game.  The Heart and Hustle Award is the only award in MLB that is voted on by former players.

Cardinals en Español: Tonight’s game will be broadcast over the radio in Spanish by Polo Ascencio and Bengie Molina.  The Spanish broadcast will air locally on WIJR 880 AM and be streamed via & the At Bat mobile app.  #STLCardenales or #SomosSTL

Artifact Spotlight: Before every Friday home game, the Cardinals Museum highlights artifacts in the collection not currently on display during a pregame presentation inside the Museum at 3:00 & 3:30.  Today’s featured item relates to the 2018 Cardinals Hall of Fame Induction Class. To purchase museum tickets, visit  #CardsMuseum

 Flashback Friday: Before every Friday home game at 4:00 p.m., the Cardinals Museum will host a presentation about Cardinals history or a museum-related topic from one of the Museum’s staff members, a former player or a visiting author.  Today’s presentation will be led by Steve Brecheen, son of newly inducted Cardinals Hall of Fame pitcher, Harry Brecheen.  To purchase museum tickets, visit  #CardsMuseum

Cardinals Care 50/50 Raffle: One lucky fan will receive 50% of the gross proceeds from tonight’s raffle ticket donations.  The other half will benefit Cardinals Care.  For more info and past winning raffle numbers, visit  #CardsCare5050

Cardinals Care Stadium Auction: Auction tables will be located at Gates 1 and 3, inside the Cardinals Club, UMB Champions Club and Redbird Club for fans and collectors to obtain specialty Cardinals items while helping support the programs that Cardinals Care provides to youth in the community.  #CardsCare

Saturday, August 18, 2018 — Cardinals vs. Milwaukee Brewers (6:15 p.m.)

Cardinals Hall of Fame Weekend presented by Edward Jones

MLB on FOX Sports 1 National Broadcast

Gates open at 4:15 p.m.

Cardinals Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony: Ray LankfordVince Coleman, and Harry Brecheen will be inducted into the Cardinals Hall of Fame during a 3:00 p.m. ceremony at FOX Sports Midwest Live! in Ballpark Village.  The ceremony is free and open to the public.  The 2018 inductees will also be recognized as part of a pregame ceremony on the field at Busch Stadium.  #CardsHOF

Hall of Fame Mystery Cap Giveaway: 30,000 fans ages 16 and older, will celebrate the fifth induction class of the Cardinals Hall of Fame with a unique mystery cap that highlights fan vote inductees Ray Lankford or Vince Coleman. #CardsPromo

Cardinals Wives Grab Bag Fundraiser: Cardinals Wives will be selling mystery grab bags to fans for $50 at Gates 1, 3, and 4, the Cardinals Club, the Redbird Club, Ford Plaza and Bud Terrace.  Inside each bag is an autographed baseball from a Cardinals player and a card revealing the mystery signature.  The proceeds from the fundraiser will benefit Great Circle and KEEN St. Louis.  For more info visit #CardsWives

Saturday Signings at the Museum: Cardinals Hall of Famer Willie McGee will sign autographs at the Cardinals Museum from 10:00 a.m.-12:00 p.m. for more information.  #CardsMuseum

Cardinals en Español: Today’s game will be broadcast over the radio in Spanish by Polo Ascencio and Bengie Molina.  The Spanish broadcast will air locally on WIJR 880 AM and be streamed via & the At Bat mobile app.  #STLCardenales or #SomosSTL

Cardinals Care 50/50 Raffle: One lucky fan will receive 50% of the gross proceeds from today’s raffle ticket donations.  The other half will benefit Cardinals Care.  For more info and past winning raffle numbers, visit  #CardsCare5050

MLBPAA Auction: The MLB Players Alumni Association will conduct a silent auction by Gate 1, Gate 3 and inside the Cardinals Club through the fifth inning.  All proceeds will benefit Cardinals Care and the MLBPAA.

Sunday, August 19, 2018 — Cardinals vs. Milwaukee Brewers (1:15 p.m.)

Cardinals Hall of Fame Weekend presented by Edward Jones

Gates open at 11:15 a.m.

Dizzy Dean Watch Giveaway: 30,000 fans ages 16 and older, will take home a one-of-a-kind Dizzy Dean watch, courtesy of AT&T. #CardsPromo

Prairie Farms Kids Run the Bases: Following the game, fans ages 15 and under are invited to run the bases of Busch Stadium (weather permitting).  Presented by Prairie Farms.

Prairie Farms Ice Cream Sunday: Starting two hours prior to the game, bring the entire family to Ford Plaza for games, prizes and free North Star frozen treats (while supplies last).

Honorary First Pitch: Miss Missouri USA 2018, Tori Kruse, will throw out a ceremonial first pitch before today’s game.

Cardinals en Español: Today’s game will be broadcast over the radio in Spanish by Polo Ascencio and Bengie Molina.  The Spanish broadcast will air locally on WIJR 880 AM and be streamed via & the At Bat mobile app.  #STLCardenales or #SomosSTL

Cardinals Care 50/50 Raffle: One lucky fan will receive 50% of the gross proceeds from today’s raffle ticket donations.  The other half will benefit Cardinals Care.  For more info and past winning raffle numbers, visit  #CardsCare5050

MLBPAA Auction: The MLB Players Alumni Association will conduct a silent auction by Gate 1, Gate 3 and inside the Cardinals Club through the fifth inning.  All proceeds will benefit Cardinals Care and the MLBPAA.

Thanks as always for reading! See you next time!


Mid-season musings

It’s Thursday evening and we’re usually watching a Cards game.  However, since this is the All-Star break, there is no baseball tonight. There will be baseball again tomorrow night but until then, I’ll just put my thoughts down here and see if you agree with me or not.

At mid-season, the Cards are tied for second place with the Cubs in the NL Central with a 43-45 record.  It could be worse – the Cards could be in last place. The Cincinnati Reds are presently in last place.  The Brewers are in first place – who’d a thunk it? The NL Central is a weak division this year. Given the quality of the Cards’ play this year, it’s amazing the Cards are tied for second place.  Like last season, the Cards have been consistently inconsistent.

Some of the players we saw at the beginning of the season have departed or have been shuttled off to Memphis.  Jhonny Peralta and Jonathon Broxton were designated for assignment. Matt Adams was traded to Atlanta, where he has been hitting well. Aledmys Diaz was sent down to Memphis, and Randal Grichuk has been sent down to Memphis and brought back up.  Luke Voit and Paul DeJong have been brought up from Memphis and played well.  Tommy Pham was called up from Memphis when Dexter Fowler was injured and has played and hit very well.

There have been changes at the managerial level as well, as outlined here. And John Mozeliak has been bumped up to a new position created for him, that of President of Baseball Operations.   Mo’s assistant GM, Michael Girsch, was promoted to general manager.

The second half of the season starts tomorrow.  The trade deadline is fast approaching.  The Cubs made a major move today – they traded 3 prospects for White Sox pitcher Jose Quintana.  Will the Cards be buyers or sellers at the trade deadline?

There are traffic jams in the outfield and in the infield.  There are four outfielders but only 3 positions.  Tommy Pham came up from Memphis and made a big splash playing center field filling in for Dexter Fowler in his two stints on the disabled list.  Tommy grew so comfortable in center field that he has stated publicly he wants to play there all the time.  However, Dexter is not going away anytime soon.  Tommy, if you had played better in that position last season, the sight problems notwithstanding, perhaps the team wouldn’t have had to sign Dexter.  I felt so bad for Jose Martinez.  He toiled in the minor leagues for years to get the chance to play in the major leagues only to be sent back down.  So do any of the outfielders go away by the trade deadline? I think the best thing that could happen is that Pham gets moved to left field and Dexter stays in center.  Grichuk should ride the bench in case of injury or if a pinch hitter is needed.  Grichuk’s bat has been streaky, but we knew that.

The infield also has a traffic jam.  Aledmys Diaz was sent down to Memphis.  Paul DeJong was brought up and has played well.  Second base has been sort of a revolving door.  Matt Carpenter was assigned to first base, which left no place for Matt Adams. Kolten Wong has been on the disabled list. Greg Garcia and Matt Carpenter have tried playing second base but neither of them has done well at the position.  Kolten has been activated so he will be back at second base tomorrow night.  Kolten’s bat has been on fire in rehab.  Luke Voit is doing a great job playing first.  He is also batting quite well.  Carpenter is the odd man out.

The closer role has also been a revolving door.  Seung-Hwan Oh started the season as the closer, but he has proven to be human.  Trevor Rosenthal has had his ups and downs as well And the bullpen has been streaky.

Everyone is saying that the Cardinals need a big bat in the middle of the lineup.  I have another suggestion.  Perhaps the Cardinals need a new hitting coach. Matt Holliday has been working with Aaron Judge, the Yankees’ big home run hitter.  Matt would be a great hitting coach for the Cards.

So should the Cards be buyers or sellers at the trade deadline?  There are so many variables in play that I hate to make even an educated guess.  All I know is that I’m glad that I don’t have to make that decision.

The All-Star Game was a lot of fun (even though the National League lost), but I’m missing Cardinals baseball and I can’t wait until 6:15 PM CST when the Cardinals play again.  Here’s hoping that the Cardinals are more consistent in the second half of the season and make the playoffs.  There’s still time for it to happen. Thanks as always for reading – see you next time!


2017 United Cardinals Blogger Event Report – Part 2

UCB_11This report turned out to be longer than anticipated so I decided to break it up into two parts.

IMG_0255Bill DeWitt, Jr., the vice president of the Cardinals, was the next speaker. Bill said he knew we were all here for the baseball stuff, but he wanted to give a report about the business side.  The Cards are having a good year.  The Cardinals are in the top 5  in attendance and they hope to have 3.3 million fans coming through the turnstiles.  The season ticket holder base is the basis for those sales.  Bill said that there are 22,000 season ticket holders, which is a really good base relative to the league.  The Cards are in the top 5 of clubs with attendance every year while being the 24th largest market in baseball.  The bloggers are part of this. The fans are hungry for information and they get it from the club, from the bloggers and everywhere.

Bill talked about Phase II of Ballpark Village.  He stated that the plans have progressed and they are being close to being finalized.  There will be a big residential tower between the Budweiser Brew House and Broadway with lovely views of the ballpark, the riverfront, etc. Bill expressed hope that some of us might be renters someday.  I thought, yeah, only if I won the Powerball.  There will be 29 floors of apartments above a platform with parking, retail stores, more restaurants and maybe even a health club.  On the other side of Ballpark Village will be an office tower with more parking and additional retail in a marketplace building.  Bill said that maybe there will be a hotel – they’re still working on that.  Bill stated they were hoping to start construction by the end of the year on Phase II.

Bill talked about the Cards’ ownership of the minor league teams.  He stated the team also owns a stake in Fox Sports Midwest.  Bill states that they continue to look more into data analytics.  Bill talked about the changes to the stadium such as the remodeling of the Family Pavilion, moving of the infield the netting out further, and updating some of the seating in various areas.  Bill stated the capital budget is about $10 million dollars a year.  Bill stated that the goal was to keep Busch Stadium III in good shape in hopes of not having to build another stadium anytime soon, unlike Atlanta.  There is also going to be a Phase III of Ballpark Village and you don’t build all that and then build a new stadium.  Bill stated there are lots of new things out there that they are studying to see if they would be a good fit for Busch Stadium, like no waiting concessions, and things the fans could do with the app now that there is wi-fi throughout the stadium.  Bill stated that the fans go to Busch Stadium to watch the game and they care about the game.  Bill said his job was to strike a balance between what’s on the field and the entertainment factor.  We should be in the middle.  The young people need to be engaged.

Bill then took questions from the bloggers.  The first question was about spring training and sharing our facility with the Marlins.  It was stated that there were some teams moving out of Florida and maybe there would be no spring training in Florida anymore because of the lack of teams.  Bill stated that question has been settled with the new ballpark with the Nationals and the Astros.  They have extended their lease with St. Lucie.  There are 5 teams in SE Florida and that’s enough.  The Cards have a good relationship with the Marlins.  Bill stated that the Cardinals have quite an impact down in Florida – every bar and restaurant has Cardinals gear in it.  The Cards in spring training are a good economic engine to south Florida and they are good to the Cards.  There will be some upgrades to the spring training facility in the next few years.  The players love where they are, but the facility is behind the curve when it’s compared to the Arizona facilities.

The next question was from Dathan Brooks about TV revenue. Dathan talked about how much he paid $157.00 a month for his DIRECTV bill and that he could get Hulu for $7.00 a month but he can get Cards baseball on both.  Surely that figures into the projections for revenue.  Bill thought some of the $157.00 was for internet.  Dathan told him no, just for TV.  Bill then replied that Dathan must have all of the movie channels, and everyone laughed.  Bill then talked about the new contract with Fox Sports Midwest and how the Cards had a stake in it now and how they want that model to last as long as possible.  The world’s changing, Fox knows, it and MLB knows it.  That’s why MLB is pushing the alternative viewing methods.  You can watch Fox Sports Go no your tablet or whatever.  Bill talked about how the model may change for viewing games, such as people cutting the cord and going to Internet-based programming options.  All of the streaming services have sports built in if you want them.  The rights still are with the club, they’re just coming through a different conduit.

The next question was about the baby blue jerseys (circa the 1980’s) and whether they would be offered as a road alternative jersey. Bill stated that the players liked the baby blue jerseys but there were no plans to put them into the rotation at this time.  Even though there are different looks for different eras, the Cardinals logo brings continuity. The baby blue uniforms always bring the 1980s club to mind for Bill.  Bill feels that if the baby blue uniforms are brought back on a permanent basis, that it’s somehow disrespectful to the memory of the 1980’s teams.  Bill said he would keep an open mind, but he thinks the baby blue uniforms should stay where they are.  Bill said they were going to do a lot of turn back the clock stuff,

Bill thought that the Cards really looked bad in Colorado with the military uniforms and that the camo theme didn’t look like the Cardinals.  The birds on the bat was camo and it didn’t match up with the red batting helmet.  Nothing against the military, Bill said.  It could be done in a way that tips your hat to the military but doesn’t makes the look of the uniform go off of the reservation.

There was a comment made about all the special jerseys MLB has, i.e., Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, etc., so that MLB can sell jerseys.  Bill stated that the jersey sales are a fundraiser for the various charities.

Someone then talked about how the Memphis club has taken the baby blue jerseys and modernized them.  Bill stated that Memphis has updated their logo as well with the neon and it looks really nice.  Bill again stated that he had an open mind and we’ll see.

The next question was whether the Cards pay attention to the public valuation of MLB franchises.  There was more to this question but I couldn’t hear it well on the video.  Bill said if they were thinking about selling the team that they would be looking at the public valuations very closely, but they’re in it for the long haul, so the Cards can balance short term and long term thinking for the roster and the business. When he sees those things, he wonders why someone would pay attention to that at all.  Bill joked about the Marlins’ premium cash flow.  He stated that the Marlins could turn things around and improve.

Someone asked if there was anything that Bill’s seen in other stadiums that he would like to have at Busch, either of an entertainment or a technological standpoint, Bill said a couple of stadiums have what he called the grab box, where you order food on your smart phone and when your food is ready, you get a text with the location of your food with a code to open the box that your food is in and you go pick it up.  Three teams are doing this but it’s not working well for 2 of the teams.  It’s not always best to be the first to try new technologies.  Bill asked how many of us had purchased the monthly pass with standing room admission to every home game.  They looking at maybe finding a space in the stadium to have all the monthly pass people stand to watch the game.

Mary Clausen of MLBVoice was brave enough to ask about what Bill thought about Mike Matheny.  Bill said he looks at the manager’s job a little differently. He thinks other focus more on X’s and O’s and game day strategy. A manager has to deal with the players and get their respect.  The manager has to deal with ownership and the management and the media.  If a manager does any of those things badly, they’re probably on the way out. Mike is really good at all of these categories.  Bill  thinks Mike is a well-rounded guy.  It’s more than having a perfect lineup card.  Bill thinks Mike has room to improve and he’s a young guy and he hopes Mike has a long managerial career like Tony LaRussa, etc.

Bill thanked us for being at the event and everything stopped while the National Anthem was sung by a high school choir – and very well sung too.

IMG_0258The next report was from Chuck, the team store supervisor.  He spoke about the remodeling of the team store over the past year.  They updated the hat line and are coming up with some different hats with more pastel colored hats for ladies to wear outside game day.  There are over 1200 hats styles throughout the stadium.  They are selling more business casual clothes such as  polo shirts for men and for women that can be worn to work and to the game. There are pastel shirts to go with the pastel hats.  There was a display table with some of the new items, but I didn’t get over there to take a photo before it was taken away.  All of the special holiday jerseys (Memorial Day, Father’s Day, etc.) are available in the team store.  Chuck talked about Star Wars Night and how some of the merchandise was available for May the Fourth (Force).  There will be a Grateful Dead t-shirt and pin for that theme night.  There is also 125th anniversary merchandise available for purchase. There are also Cardinals fidget spinners available in the team store, which are wildly popular.

The next report was from Larry Johnson, the team chef.  He turned it over to Shaun Baker and he spoke briefly about the Cardinals Nation food truck. It opened on March 20.  The food truck goes to parks, etc.  There are 10 entrees from Cardinals Nation offered at the food truck.  Shaun mentioned all of the social media accounts so you can keep up with where the food truck is going to be.  The food truck is also available to be booked for social events and gatherings.

The microphone went back to Larry.  Larry spoke about the hydroponic garden in Section 228, third floor.  Rooftop Urban Community is helping with the hydroponic garden.  They consume a lot of produce at Busch Stadium.  They are growing herbs, flower petals for cocktails, etc.  Whatever is not used at the stadium is given back to Rooftop Urban and they give it to the homeless. I thought that was very nice.  In section 148, you’ll see the double slider burger.  In section 148, there is eco-grilling.  You can pick your own sausage or hot dog before it’s cooked and you can pair it with tater tots, etc. There is a new market on the Broadway side of the stadium just like the 8th Street Market.  There is also a new barbecue stand next to the new market.  There is a Kids’ Kitchen with healthy snacks.  Nachos is the number one food sold at the stadium.  The priority is to sell guests fresher, faster, and more consistent food products.  They are shooting for serving you in 35-40 seconds rather than a minute and a  half so you can get back to your seat faster.  Some of the locations don’t carry everything – that creates a bottleneck.  If you just want a beer, go to a beer vendor.

Ron Watermon took the mike back.  Mary Beth Rea finally showed up and Ron called her the Jose Oquendo of the communications department.  If you don’t get that reference, you haven’t been a Cardinals fan for long enough.  Ron did a plug for the Rat Pack campaign, which is about Whitey Herzog from his birth in New Athens to the Cardinals Hall of Fame.  Ron then thanked us for coming.

After listening to all of this talking, I was thirsty.  I needed a beer.  So I bellied up to the bar and the bartender asked if I wanted Bud, Bud Light, or a Shock Top. Shock Top? Really?  It turns out there was an auxiliary bar outside where we could get free Shock Top beer (in 16 oz. cans) or free mixed drinks. I was impressed.  There was a bag of what looked like wooden nickels on the bar.  I asked the bartender what they were for.  It turned out that they were for a free meal from the Cardinals Nation food truck. Everyone got a chip. I used the chip on Friday and the food was very good.

It was then time for food (glorious food).  Here are the items that were offered:

Premium Food Items:  Mediterranean Dip, pasta salad, strawberry pecan salad, Hill subs, Nacho Grande, chocolate chip cookies, brownies, and Chef Lynn’s Pasta.  Of these, the only things I tried were the nachos (cheese and taco meat only) and the brownies.

Concession Food Items:  Stand 271 (Bowtie Bar) – Double Stack Burger sliders with beer cheese.  I liked this so much I had 2 of them.  These also had grilled onions.  Stand 148 (Double Play) – chorizo sausage with peppers and onions and Italian sausage  with peppers and onions. I skipped the peppers and onions and just tried the sausages.  the Italian sausage was great. but the chorizo sausage was too spicy for me.

The rest of the afternoon was spent catching up with old friends such as Bill and Angela Ivie, Bob Netherton, Tom Kruppel, Josey Curtis and Dathan Brooks, and meeting new friends like the STL Cardsgals (they are podcasters).

The game was pretty good, too.  Dexter Fowler hit a home run for us.  It wasn’t one of Waino’s best pitching outings (although it was much better than yesterday’s game), and the Cards won the game.

As usually happens, a group photo was taken before the game ended.



Sorry it took me so long to get the second part of this report up.  I had a very busy weekend.  Thanks as always for reading! See you next time!


Ch-ch-ch-changes (time to face the strange)

(With apologies to the late David Bowie.) By now, you probably know that there was a press conference at Busch Stadium this afternoon with general manager John Mozeliak and some changes were to the coaching staff were announced, along with a player move.  For those whose missed the news, here’s a recap:

  • Chris Maloney, the third base coach, will be reassigned to another position in the Cardinals organization.
  • Mike Schildt, the quality control coach, will replace Maloney as third base coach.
  • Assistant hitting coach Bill Mueller is taking a leave of absence.  Mark Budaska is being brought up from AAA Memphis to replace Miller.
  • Ron “Pop” Warner is being brought up from AAA Memphis to assist the coaching staff.
  • Kolten Wong was activated, and Jhonny Peralta was designated for assignment to make room for Kolten.

I (and a lot of others) don’t think that the cuts went far enough.  We were hoping that John Mabry would be relieved of his duties as hitting coach.  Something is wrong when a team scores an average of 2 runs a game.  When players get sent down to Memphis to retune their hitting stroke and rake there, but when they come back to the main club and go back to their bad ways, there’s a problem.  When Randall Grichuk has to go all the way down to single A to work with a hitting guru, there’s a problem.  When Matt Adams is traded to the Braves and he’s blistering home runs in their new stadium, there’s a problem.  If the team’s hitting problems continue, Mabry needs to go, even though he’s Mike Matheny’s BFF.

I have a suggestion, for what it’s worth.  How about hiring Chris Carpenter as a bullpen coach?  They are in great need of assistance as well.

Peralta’s time with the team has been over for quite awhile.  Peralta hasn’t had any RBI’s this season at all. Jedd Gyorko’s excellent playing and hitting abilities made Peralta redundant. Jonathan Broxton was also released recently.  Best of luck to both of them, and thanks for the memories.

Changes had to be made. Cardinals fans were very discouraged by the 7 game road game losing streak.  Some of those games could have been won.  If the team doesn’t start winning soon, fans will make their displeasure known via their wallets.  They’ll stop coming to the games.  If fans stop coming to the games, they won’t be spending money before, during and after the games.  Not only will it be bad for Busch Stadium business, it will be bad for Ballpark Village business, as well as for other businesses near the stadium.  I am very sad about the Cards’ lackluster play this season as well.  I really hope the Cards can get things turned around.

This Sunday is the annual United Cardinals Bloggers event when the Cardinals invite us all to Busch Stadium to a question and answer session with John Mozeliak and Bill DeWill, III, and then are treated to the Sunday afternoon game in a party room.  The Q&A session ought to be really interesting this year.  I’ll report on that in my next post.

Thanks as always for reading!  See you next time!


Read all about it! Two new books about the Cards

What do you do on the days that the Cardinals don’t play, or they get rained out? Or on cold winter days when you dream about spring? Why, read a book about the Cardinals, of course!  There are two new books about the Cardinals that are well worth your time to read:  The Cardinals Way: How One Team Embraced Tradition and Moneyball at the Same Time by Howard Megdal and Taking Flight : The St. Louis Cardinals and the Building of Baseball’s Best Franchise by Rob Rains. Click on the titles to find them on Amazon.  Here’s a brief review of both books.

To fans of other teams, “the Cardinals Way” is a derogatory term.  But this book explains how that term came to be.  In this book, you will get a detailed overview as to how the Cardinals’ player development system came to be.  You will learn all about George Kissell:  his playing career, his coaching career, and his personal life.  There is a detailed description of how Branch Rickey set up the minor league system.  And you will learn how George Kissell made up the binder with all of his knowledge that became known as the Cardinal Way.  In later chapters, you will read about how Bill DeWitt, Jr. came to merge the Cardinals Way with the sabermetrics system made famous in Moneyball.  The Cardinals’ current advertising tagline, “Tradition Meets Today,” will make much more sense once you read this book.  There are fascinating chapters about how the Cards’ foreign scouting process works and also about the draft.  The book is a little dry in spots, but there is a lot of interesting details in this book.  I’m usually a pretty fast reader, but it took me several days to read this book since there was so much in it.

Cardinals Way author Howard Megdal, along with Bill DeWitt, Jr. and John Mozeliak, will be interviewed by Dan McLaughlin of FOX Sports Midwest on April 29, 2016, at 2 PM.  The panel discussion will be held in Cardinals Nation in Ballpark Village. After the discussion, Mr. Megdal will sign books in the Authentics store at Ballpark Village until 5 PM. This should be a very informative session.

Rob Rains’ book shares some of the same subjects as Megdal’s book, but this book delves more into the Cards’ minor league system. Whitey Herzog wrote the forward to this book.  The prologue to the book details how Branch Rickey founded the minor leagues and provides information about George Kissell. Several players speak about George’s influence on them.  The first chapter details John Mozeliak’s career, and the next 28 chapters are about the Cardinals’ minor league players.  Each chapter focuses on one minor league player. Rains wrote minimal narration and he allowed the players to tell their own stories.  Two of the minor league players covered, Mitch Harris and Aledmys Diaz, are now on the major league squad.  Xavier Scruggs was cut by the Cardinals, but he now plays for the Marlins. There are also two sets of full-color photos in this book.  This is a lighter read than The Cardinal Way, but no less enjoyable.  While reading this book, I have discovered some new young players to root for and I’m sure you will too.

Rob will be signing his book at several locations this spring.  Here is the schedule:

Thursday, April 28, 2015, 4:30 PM – Missouri Cherry Blossom Festival, Marshfield, MO – Marshfield Assembly of God
Rob is receiving the Ella Dickey Award for Literacy and doing a book signing afterward.
Saturday, April 30, 2016, 10:30 AM – Barnes & Noble Springfield, MO. Carson Kelly is also scheduled to appear.
Saturday, May 14, 2016, 1 PM – Barnes & Noble, Fairview Heights, IL
Monday, June 6, 2015, 7 PM – Left Bank Books, St. Louis, MO
The Cardinals thankfully won one game out of the series with the Cubs.  The boys need to beat not only the bad teams but the good ones as well.  Tomorrow night, the Cards will be playing the Padres, who signed Jon Jay over the winter.
Thanks as always for reading!  See you next time!

2016 Winter Warm-Up wrap up

WWUThis was my first complete weekend excursion into the Winter Warm-Up experience. In 2004, an attorney I worked for had his uncle’s pass, so I headed over to the hotel on my lunch hour and zipped through the whole thing.

I usually do not go to Winter Warm-Up because of the cost of the pass ($40).  My friend Kim, however, contacted me and asked if I wanted to go.  I conferred with my husband and I was able to say yes.  I couldn’t afford any of the paid autograph tickets (and neither could Kim), so we thought we’d get some free autographs and attend some of the presentations. We could also see our boys of summer and get our fix until spring training. It was a win-win for both of us. My son Phillip also came with us.

As you may know, all proceeds from Winter Warm-Up go to Cardinals Care, the Cardinals’ charitable organization that supports children’s agencies, builds youth ball fields, and funds Redbird Rookies, which is a a youth baseball development program.  There were silent auctions held all three days, as well as live auctions on the main stage, the proceeds of which also went to Cardinals Care.

On Saturday, we arrived and went to the second floor.  We enjoyed looking at some of the goodies at the Cardinals Authentics booth, which unfortunately were  out of our price range. We then went into the exhibitor hall to check out the vendor booths. There were 44 vendors in the exhibitor hall, and 90% of them were sports collectible vendors.

After we got through the vendor booths, we went to the food sales area and got a soda.  We then decided to go upstairs to the fourth floor to the main stage area to hear general manager John Mozeliak speak.  Dan McLaughlin of Fox Sports Midwest conversed with Mo, and then the floor was opened to questions.  Some of the questions were very interesting.  Here’s a photo of that (it was taken with my phone from a distance, so I apologize for the quality of the photo):


After we listened to the Q & A for a while, we decided to go to lunch. We walked down the street to Hardee’s.

When we came back, we decided to attend the 1:00 presentation in the Dugout Room.  We heard Dan Farrell speak about the Cardinals’ sales and marketing strategies for 2016.  Mr. Farrell told us about the HD video boards that were recently installed at Busch Stadium.  Mr. Farrell also talked about some of the promotions and theme nights for 2015. He also mentioned that instead of 25,000 giveaway items per game, there would be 30,000 giveaways per game.  Mr. Farrell also told us about a perk for season ticket holders – you are eligible to purchase a complete set of the promotional item giveaways for the season.

After the presentation, we went back to the fourth floor and looked at the goodies on sales at the Cardinals Team Store and the Cardinals Care Store. The items at the Team Store were at least 50% off, if not more. I purchased a little travel purse, originally $24.00, for $12.00.  I had wanted this particular item last year, but couldn’t find it this year.

After we were done looking through the stores,we went to the Clubhouse Room to a 2:00 presentation with Dan Martin, who is the artist that presently draws the Weatherbird for the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.  Most of the presentation was about the late Amadee Wohlschlager, who drew many Cardinals and sports illustrations and who also drew the Weatherbird for many years.  Dan then drew the Weatherbird on a large paper on an easel to show us how it’s done.  He then had it auctioned off for Cardinals Care.


After the presentation, we then went back into the main stage area to discover Jennifer Langosch (the beat writer for the Cardinals) and Derrick Goold (a sportswriter for the St. Louis Post-Dispatch and the president of the Baseball Writers’Association of America), being interviewed by a member of Team Fredbird. This must have been a last minute thing, because it was not on the board that listed who was going to be on the stage that day.  I then saw and briefly chatted with Lindsey Weber, the Cardinals’ social media director.  After that, we went home for the day.

Via text Saturday night, Kim and I discussed what free autographs we wanted to get the next day and what time we needed to be there the next day to get tickets.  We arrived at 10 a.m. and stood in line to get tickets for Rick Horton’s autographs.  I went to a lot of games in the 1980s and remember seeing Rick pitch.  We then went to the second floor and got a soda. We then went back up to the Team Store, where I purchased the duffle bag I had looked at the day before.

We went back to the autograph ticket line to get autograph tickets for Andy and Alan Benes. I then realized we needed something for Rick and Andy and Alan Benes to sign. We popped into the vendor area and the very first vendor we stopped at had baseball cards of that day’s players for 50 cents each.  They were in great shape and the price was right. We then went back to the lobby and got our autograph tickets for the Benes brothers, then went back upstairs to get in line for Rick’s autograph.  Rick was very nice and personable.  While in line, we listened to Mike Shannon on the main stage. There was Q & A’s about his restaurant closing.

After we got Rick’s autograph, we decided it was time for lunch. We went to Hardee’s again.

We came back and got into the line for the Benes brothers’ autographs. The line moved quickly.  After we got the autographs, we went to a presentation in the Clubhouse Room given by Brian Finch, the author of  Redbird Relics. The presentation was about Billy Southworth’s modified baseball cap that his son wore in combat in World War II, and we could see and take photos of the cap:

20160117_150238      20160117_150250

After the presentation, we went back to the Team Store to see if any new merchandise had come in.  I scored a leather steering wheel cover for $8.00.  We then headed home.

On Monday morning, Kim texted me and begged off for today, stating she had “people overload.”  I certainly could understand that.  There weren’t as many people there today, however, probably because it was Monday and a lot of people had to go back to work.

There wasn’t any free autographs that we wanted to get today, so Phil and I attended the presentation in the Clubhouse Room at 10:00 a.m. that looked back at the performance of Yadi and Waino in game 7 of the 2006 NLCS, which was again presented by Brian Finch.  It was a toss-up between attending this presentation and listening to Bill DeWitt III on the Main Stage.  Brian told us what Mr. DeWitt was going to speak about, which were the names of  the 2016 Cardinals Hall of Fame nominees. There will be a formal post later with the names of the nominees.  So we didn’t really miss anything after all.

We also saw Yadi’s bat and cleats from the 7th game of the 2006 NLCS.  Here’s a photo (sorry about the flash, curators – I forgot to turn it off and I wanted to move the line along):


At this presentation I also got to meet Josey Curtis, a fellow United Cardinals Bloggers blogger, who writes for  She’s only 14 years old and she’s a great writer.  Go and look her up after you’re done reading this blog post.

After the presentation, we went back to the Team Store.  The wheel cover I bought yesterday didn’t fit my vehicle’s steering wheel and I wanted to see if I could get a refund. I couldn’t get a refund, but they let me have an exchange, so I got a nice Cardinals coffee mug that I will use at work.

On our way out, we stopped at the Tony LaRussa ARF Foundation booth.  Phil purchased a Memories and Dreams commemorative Hall of Fame Weekend Program from when Tony was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame which was autographed by Tony for only $5.00.  That was a great deal. We then went to St. Louis Bread Company for lunch since we were burned out on Hardee’s.  I ran into 2 attorneys there that I used to work for.  It was nice to see them.

This was the first Winter Warm-Up I attended and I really enjoyed it. I have a few practical tips, should you decide to attend next year:

Carry a little cash.  It is safer to carry plastic, but there is some things you will need cash for. You will need cash to tip the coat check attendant. The food sales area (water, soda, food items) and the beer vendor only take cash.  I didn’t buy any 50/50 tickets, but I would think they would only take cash as well.  Plus, if you have a budget for the day, you can carry that amount in cash, and once it’s gone, you’re done spending.

Dress in layers. Certain areas of the ballrooms are warm and some are chilly. I got warm in the main stage area on Saturday when there were a lot of people there.  The Clubhouse Presentation Room also got warm in the afternoon.  You can check your heavy coat with the coat check attendant on the fourth floor near the elevators.

Wear comfortable shoes. You’ll be standing in line for autograph tickets and standing in line for autographs, and you’ll be walking around a lot.

Decide if it’s more important to you to get autographs or listen to presentations.  If there is a presentation on the Main Stage that’s going on while you’re in the autograph line, you’ll be able to hear it.  But the other presentations are in conference rooms on another floor. And if you want to get autograph tickets for free autographs, you may have to wait in line during times when presentations are being held.  The schedule is posted on the Cardinals’ website, so you can figure out in advance what you want to do. There are last minute autograph sessions and presentations, so keep your schedule open.

If you live in town and you don’t want the hassle or expense of finding a parking spot in a garage, you can take Metrolink to downtown St. Louis.  It’s a 5 block walk from the 8th & Pine Metrolink station to the Hyatt Regency.

Winter Warm-Up was a nice reminder that spring training, and then baseball, is right around the corner.  Hopefully, the time will pass quickly.  That’s all for now! Thanks for reading and see you next time!


Q&A with Cardinals GM John Mozeliak – Part 2

UCB_11For the second year in a row, Cardinals GM John Mozeliak has graciously answered questions from various United Cardinals Bloggers writers. Many thanks to Lindsey Weber of the Cardinals’ communication department for assisting in this opportunity to pick Mo’s brain.

There were 60 questions asked by the bloggers.  I had two questions, but only one got answered, probably because there were so many questions. Here is my question, with Mo’s response:

WWLCB:  As we all know, baseball has a long regular season and then, if a team has a good enough record, a long postseason as well. One reason the offense suffered in 2015 may have been the lack of scheduled days off for the non-injured starting lineup. Will there be more of an effort made to give the starting lineup scheduled days off during the 2016 season?

Mo: That’s an interesting question and I’m not exactly sure if that’s a chicken and the egg situation. I think being more proactive on creating a balanced team to where you can give Yadi an extra day, or Matt Holliday, Matt Carpenter, Peralta; the fact that we’re naming names means it’s probably a good strategy. I think that’s something that Mike and his staff are going to be very conscious of.

If you would like to see the other questions that Mo answered, you can go to United Cardinals Bloggers to see the other posts.

The winter meetings start this week, so hopefully Mo will do some wheeling and dealing to pick up some players for the Cards.  My next post will be the annual WWLCB Holiday Gift Guide, so look for that.  Until next time, thanks for reading!