Diamond Diaries

Cardinal baseball, from the girls

There’s no crying in baseball… unless it’s Lou Brock Night.

Last night my family went to the Bricktown Ballpark in Oklahoma City to watch the visiting Memphis Redbirds, our Cardinals’ AAA affiliate, play the OKC Redhawks. It was also Lou Brock night, and we were excited to meet Mr. Brock and have him sign autographs. I had talked it up and taught the kiddos about the base-stealing Cardinals legend. We had front row tickets on the first base side – right by the Memphis dugout. I had visions of a fun night of baseball for the kids. (OK, truthfully, I was even more excited than they were!) But despite all my plans, the night ended in tears – not the outcome I was hoping for.
We drove in early to have dinner and get autographs before the game. What I had not foreseen was that Mr. Brock would be signing DURING the game, not before. So instead of sitting in our front row seats, we stood in a (very) long line for 2 1/2 hours and watched the first 7 innings from an obstructed view in the concourse. My son DID see the ballgame from his seat, since (wisely) he wanted no part in that long line. Big thanks to my Mom for agreeing to sit and watch with him!

Lance Lynn was on the mound for our Memphis Redbirds (aka ‘Baby Birds’), and he was throwing a no-hitter through 6 innings! —Meanwhile, we waited for Lou Brock. We had been warned he would only sign until 9pm, but had faith we might make it to the front by then. We waited as the line crept closer. My daughter was patient, but restless. When the clock struck 9, Mr. Brock got up and left. We had missed it by ‘that much’, give or take 10 feet. Bummer!
We wandered back to our seats to watch the game, but my daughter was fighting back tears, very disappointed after that long wait. We did get to watch 2 exciting innings as the Redbirds fell behind (no longer a no-hitter), and then rally with 4 runs in the 9th. Ultimately our ‘Baby Birds’ lost the game. Bummers again!
With kids, it can be hard to talk-up an experience where they have missed out on the autographs and their team has lost. Kids (like many grown-ups) are all about the WIN. During the drive home, my daughter was still heartbroken. My son was more forgiving of the evening’s outcome – mostly because he was hyped up on Twizzlers and Skittles shared by the fans behind us and he got a foul ball (caught by a man who then gave it to my son).
This morning, however, I was pleased to discover the tears had been replaced with baseball excitement again. We are heading back to the ballpark for another round of ‘Baby Bird’ ball this afternoon. No long lines today, just a full game from our front row seats with a promise of Cracker Jacks or cotton candy to sweeten the deal.
I’d like to hope my kids came to understand something important about baseball yesterday. With baseball, there’s always tomorrow, starting over, with a chance to get the win. It’s a good lesson that helps make disappointments easier to handle. Have a great Sunday everyone! Play Ball!


Footnote: A big shout-out to a great Twitter Cardinals fan, @throatwarbler, who was also there (with his sweet daughter) for Lou Brock Night. So fun to finally meet him in person! {proof} If you are a Cardinals fan on twitter, follow him! Wonderful, funny guy who knows a lot about baseball & Cardinals history. You can read some of his great game stories here.

One response to “There’s no crying in baseball… unless it’s Lou Brock Night.

  1. Neal Bradley April 26, 2010 at 8:47 AM

    >If your daughter decides to boo Lou Brock, (I hope she doesn't, but if she does), be sure to tell her she would not be alone in that regard.I bet she will never forget the weekend anyway. My son still talks about all of our trips as if they happened yesterday, and now I watch proudly as he passes on the Cardinal way to my grandsons.

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