Underwear Man: Cardinal’s Baseball

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Here was my Friday night, August 29, 2014:

Farm Boy called home from work to ask if I wanted him to bring home the company tickets for four he was offered to see the Cardinal’s game tonight against the Chicago Cubs.

Let’s see? Colson, A.J. and I are huge Cardinal’s fans. We get to see my Stillwater, Oklahoma, home town favorite, Matt Holliday.  And…wait for it…we had just finished reading the latest Cardinal’s Club update that Yadier Molina was back on the roster to start in tonight’s game. YES—yes! Bring home the tickets!

After we parked and made our way to the stadium I was reminded that there is no other city in which I would enjoy baseball more than St. Louis, Missouri, home of Cardinal Nation. I love the sea of red but just because we live in a sea of red does not mean I enjoy the humidity that goes with living by the sea. Could somebody push the delete button on the humidity please? I have to drive three house west of St. Louis to lose it.

The nightlife at Busch Stadium buzzes like never before with the new addition of Ballpark Village. People pouring in and out of every open door as fans were enjoying pre-game meals, drinks, dancing, and parties.

For my boys, part of the fun in going to the stadium is seeing which ticket dad hands them. Ticket stubs are treasure which are promptly hung on the bulletin board in their bedroom upon arriving home. Colson was ecstatic to be handed Yadi’s pic and A.J. thrilled to have Holliday’s. To my boys, these are the two most prized tickets to hold in their ten and eleven year old hands.

Here are the reasons my boys love Yadi and Holliday:

  1. They are Christians.
  2. Matt was born and raised in my hometown of Stillwater, Oklahoma, and the boys are faithful fans.
  3. Yadier Molina is the best catcher in baseball.

Then—A.J. dropped his coveted Holliday ticket as we stepped on the escalator. Farm Boy made a return trip, by way of stairs, to the bottom of the escalator but either someone had picked up the ticket or the escalator had eaten it. We had a sad young man but smiles were to be had again as we found our seats just past third base overlooking Matt Holliday.

We enjoyed watching Holliday catch multiple popflys, get on base, and score an RBI.

The crowd went wild as Yadi stepped up to the plate for his first at bat since his seven week recovery following thumb surgery on his throwing hand. This was the third time the fans wildly cheered for him and it wouldn’t be the last standing ovation. The next came after he struck out. Yep! That’s how true fans roll. We stood and cheered for him again—cause we love him and want him to always be a Cardinal. Always! I hope Yadi will be a part of this franchise to the very end, following after the likes of Stan the Man Musial.

Here is the information the night will be remembered for: The drunk man. At least I assume the man was drunk—that’s the story we told our boys because who after all, would jump down from their seat and run clumsily across the field, zigzagging, in hopes of avoiding being caught by security, in their underwear. Yes, underwear.

As soon as I realized what was going on I looked over at my boys whose mouths were  wide open in astonishment, with quizzical brows, looking at me like, “What on earth is going on?”

“He’s drunk,” I said and I looked back at the field. All the time I was watching I was thinking and praying, “Please don’t take them (the underwear) off! There are children watching!” There was a lot of movement going on. Legs possibly ready to give way underneath him and hands theatrically flailing in the air. Please leave the underwear on, please!

As soon as Underwear Man began running  in the outfield, in front of Matt Holliday and running toward second base, a security man or Busch Stadium staff member gave chase. Then security came running from different directions to help catch Underwear Man. Loyal Cardinal’s fans did not need to fear as we watched the first man to give chase, dive and take Underwear Man down by the legs. The crowd went crazy as five or six red shirts helped keep Underwear Man down while a police officer handcuffed the uncaped non-super hero. The crowd continued to cheer for the good guys who saved the night.

Security surrounded Underwear Man so the crowd couldn’t see him, which I thought was wise, but then for some reason security dispersed and Underwear Man, soon to be jail-bird, was led off the field by the police officer with the help of two security officials.

I later asked Farm Boy if he noticed Underwear Man ran like perhaps he had a disability, to which he laughingly replied, “His disability was drunkenness.” Okay, he had an elected disability; color me blond! It provided a teachable moment with our boys. They saw first hand the stupidity of being drunk and realized the consequences the man will have to live with; an arrest record, fines, and pictures and video permanently placed on the world wide web.

I wondered what Holliday was thinking. Was this the weirdest night of baseball he had experienced? Had someone more bizarre than Underwear Man ever made it onto the field and, if so, had they entered in left field?

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I wondered what Mike Shannon’s commentary was as he announced live on KMOX 1120 radio the escapades of the crazy man on the field. The above picture is the ball that Mike Shannon sits on as he announces the games in the announcer’s booth.

Here is a link to pictures of the night including Underwear Man. I had Farm Boy look at the pics first and he told me the boxer briefs were flapping in the wind. In other words the pics aren’t fit for viewing so only look at the first picture of the handcuffed uncaped non-super hero. Skip the second picture. You have been warned!

This made me thankful we had a backside view and not a front view.

The game ended with the Cards being pummeled by the Cubbies, 7-2.

The fun of the evening came while watching and listening to a group of Cub’s fans from Chicago, who were in town for a wedding, cheer for their team through the multiple home runs blasted beyond the outfield walls. Multiple. Home. Runs. Ouch!

Perhaps history was made not because of Underwear Man streaking across the Cardinal’s field at Busch Stadium but due to Cardinal’s fans and Cub’s fans, each other’s arch nemesis, enjoying an evening of an old American classic, baseball, together.

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