It’s hard to describe the feelings of being at an All Star Game, especially being in my hometown for it. It was really overwhelming and emotional for me. Totally worth the trip and the exorbitant ebay ticket prices!
I arrived a couple hours early, and met up with friends for beers. We walked around the stadium, getting excited for the festivities to come. We saw the teams posing for team photos and some batting practice. I was sitting in the my same seat in the left field bleachers again. Above, you can see the view from my seat and the cool arch and courthouse mowed into the field.
The pre-game festivities were amazing. The clydesdales came out. If you grew up in St. Louis like I did, home of Anheuser-Busch, seeing the clydesdales will always be emotional. I was definitely getting teary-eyed at this point.
The emotion got even higher when our living hall-of-famers entered the
field: Lou Brock, Bob Gibson, Bruce Sutter, Ozzie Smith, Red
Schoendinst. Only one key person was missing, and then the side gate
of the stadium opened. Stan Musial emerged on a cart. The stadium
erupted in cheers. I had been worried he wouldn’t make it when he
didn’t appear in the parade, so it was a thrill to see him.
Iraq war vets came out with a ginormous flag. Sheryl Crow performed the National Anthem and the flag was rolled out. Even the most cynical person was feeling patriotic and emotional by this point. All Stars Among Us were introduced – normal folks who have done great work in the community. A highlight reel of all the living presidents talking about service work played to introduce this segment. The teams were introduced. And then President Obama came out to throw the first pitch.
I guess I shouldn’t be too surprised that the videos of George Bush and George W. Bush seemed to get more applause from the local crowd than Obama. There were even a lot of boos for Obama in my section. This was disappointing to me, as I think our President deserves respect, regardless of ones party leanings. I guess that was a reminder to me of why I live in LA, even though I still love St. Louis. A leftie like me fits in better in California.
Obama wore jeans and a White Sox jacket and threw the first pitch to Albert Pujols. He then greeted all the hall of famers. The stadium was at a fever pitch for the game. I was sure this would be the year the National League would get a win. I have friends with 12-year-old kids who have never seen the National League win an all star game in their lifetime! But alas, it was not to be. American League won 4-3. It was a pretty lackluster game. Hometowner kid Ryan Howard had the best chance to get a lead for the National League but struck out on a bad pitch. Unfortunately, the game did not live up to the pre-game show.
Even Cubs and Cards fans get along at the All Star Game! I was sitting very close to Mama Lucy (pictured above, with headphones) and she kept the game exciting with constant cheering.
Cards fans were missing Jack Buck, and this fan paid a nice tribute. Personally, I was missing my dad a lot that night. He was a big Cards fan and died in 2007. It would have been awesome to share the All Star Game experience with him, but in a way, I felt like he was there.
It was an amazing experience to be at the All Star Game. I
walked around the stadium for a while after the game, soaking up the
atmosphere. I just didn’t want it to be over – I was in baseball