Finally. The best day of the year in St. Louis is here. This is better than Veiled Prophet, and for those not from STL, I won’t even try to explain what that is. Opening Day at Busch Stadium. I can only describe it as a national holiday, because to us, Cardinals fans, that’s what it is.
Today is a day when the famous Budweiser Clydesdales will come back. Today is a day when Fredbird will be back home in all his funny, feathery glory. Today is a day when the young and the old can come together in mutual overwhelming, child-like joy. The boys in red and white are finally home. Its another season, and another year for the Cardinals to continue to prove why they are our favorite team.
I just want to clarify that Opening Day at Busch Stadium is different then Opening Day in general. Opening Day at Busch Stadium means that I can go to games now. It means that baseball is truly back, because before, it was almost like a dream. Real, but not real, because I had to watch the Birds on the TV. Now, with them home, its a reality. And its one that is so sweet, St. Louis might explode.
St. Louis finally has the ultimate party scene that everyone has been waiting for: Ballpark Village. It’s literally a village tailored to baseball. You can watch the Cards on big screen TV’s. You can sit and watch the game in bleachers that were built specifically to overlook the stadium.
It’s been a year since we lost Stan the Man. It’s been a year since the World Series was ripped out of our grasp by the Red Sox. But today marks the beginning of a new season. Chris Carpenter is throwing out the first pitch. Michael Wacha is going to dazzle us with his magic. It’s Molina Monday. The Birds are back. And frankly, I could not be happier.
With the loss of Phil Pressey, Alex Oriakhi, and Laurence Bowers, many wondered how the Mizzou Tigers men’s basketball team would fare this year. It would be the first year that head coach Frank Haith would display a team that is comprised of players that he recruited. All of former head coach Mike Anderson’s players had moved on. However, with their starting big men gone and their point guard, would Mizzou be able to compete this season? This was the main concern for the Tigers entering the season: would they be able to replace the front line scoring and rebounding that they had last year. So how is the season progressing? With last night’s loss to LSU, the Tigers have dropped to 2-3 in conference play and 14-4 overall. The non-conference schedule was soft, and produced a quality win over UCLA at home, but a frustrating loss to Illinois in the Braggin’ Rights game. This is the same Illinois team that has now dropped four straight Big 10 games. The conference schedule has produced what will surely look like a bad loss to Georgia at home, and a road loss to a mediocre Vanderbilt team. So what’s the problem? It’s what everyone has been saying: the front line is not producing the rebounds and points that the team had last year with Bowers and Oriakhi. The statistics do not lie. Last year, Alex Oriakhi averaged 11.2 points a game and 8.4 rebounds. Laurence Bowers averaged 14.1 points a game and 6.1 rebounds. This year, Jonathan Williams III, who is a freshman, is averaging 7.1 points a game and 7.4 rebounds. Ryan Rosberg is averaging 4.5 points a game and 4.4 rebounds. Coach Haith has publicly complained that the team is just not finishing strong at the rim. Missed layups and inconsistent rebounding has put Mizzou in a difficult spot. The guard play has been strong, but it’s not enough to make up for the soft inside play in close games. So, Mizzou is what its record indicates. Unranked and clearly with work to do if it wants to make the NCAA tournament.
Can I just say that on behalf of Cardinal Nation, we are so happy that you are on our team.
Thank you for Wachtober. For allowing Fox Sports to do a segment with the Muppets. For your last name just being so fun to say. And for reminding me of Pac-Man. WACHA WACHA WACHA WACHA.
But enough about your name. Let’s talk about your game. Let’s talk about being unbeaten in the post season. Let’s talk about 3 games where only one or two hits were allowed. Almost no walks. 2 major road wins.
It’s Game Six of the World Series tonight. In Fenway. And we are about to ask you to do exactly what you did in Game Four of the NLDS. Bring us home a win. Help bring home another ring to STL.
So as I watch you on my TV tonight, know I’ll be rooting for you like I’ve rooted for you all season long. Know that a city is hoping that you will give them one more game to make it 12 in 13.
And know that we believe in you. You are Chris Carpenter’s protegé. Help bring home a win.
And if you ever need a date, hit a girl up.
A Cardinals Fan
but seriously, I’m available