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Fans' impressions of
Sportsmans Park



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Frederick Nachman, Chicago, IL -- Oct 15, 2006 23:55 PM
1 visit(s). My rating: 6
My only visit was on a hot summer night in 1965. The Cards had won the World Series the year before but their poor performance already had fans in a foul mood. I remember a well-dressed woman yelling at Ken Boyer after he booted a routine ground ball; you didn't see that much back then. The game was a sellout, as befitted a World Champion. We had seats high in the right-field corner. I was there with my friend Bill and his grandparents. He and I sneaked down to the box seats and weren't caught; the ushers didn't monitor the stands like they did back in Chicago. Like Connie Mack Stadium, Busch Stadium (as it was named after the Browns left town) was in disrepair by then but a unique place, with bleachers in left field and the pavilion in right field, which had a roof and screen that ran from the wall to the roof. A HR had to clear the screen. Seats were close to the field, making in fun for the fans.


Dean Sommers, Wenonah, NJ -- Sep 03, 2008 07:45 AM
1 visit(s). My rating: 6
My family and I had an opportunity to visit the site of old Sportsman's Park while visiting St. Louis this summer. St. Louis has done a nice job of commemorating the site with a large billboard-style poster noting that the corner of Dodier St. and Grand Boulevard is the site of Sportman's Park, and listing some players who played there, along with the World Championships won by the Cardinals (the Browns didn't win any). There is no evidence of the actual ballpark, as the site is now a kids' athletic facility. A very nice tribute, but nothing to see (unlike Forbes Field, for example). We took a few pictures, but only stayed 5-10 minutes.


Steve Harms, Madison, WI -- Dec 23, 2012 21:41 PM
1 visit(s). My rating: 7
My family went in the summer of 1965' before the new downtown stadium opened. I was a Cardinal fan (even though my Dad was a Cub fan) You were very close to the action, as previously mentioned. The Cardinals played the Reds and won. Not sure of the score, because the highlight for a 12 year old was the ball off the bat of Vada Pinson was caught in the air by my father in the right field lower stands. But the coolest thing happened a minute later, the usher came running down the steps, which I thought "they're going to take the ball back". He took my dad's name and left. About 10 minutes later he returned with a "contract" signed by Auggie Busch Jr. I still have the ball, but not the contract. I also remember like it was yesterday Lou Brock catching a ball high off the left field fence. Being so close to the action made it a special experience. I've been to Wrigley, Fenway, Tiger stadium, Yankee stadium original, and they all have/had that intimacy that's hard to recreate today.


Steve Harms, Madison, WI -- Dec 23, 2012 21:41 PM
1 visit(s). My rating: 7
My family went in the summer of 1965' before the new downtown stadium opened. I was a Cardinal fan (even though my Dad was a Cub fan) You were very close to the action, as previously mentioned. The Cardinals played the Reds and won. Not sure of the score, because the highlight for a 12 year old was the ball off the bat of Vada Pinson was caught in the air by my father in the right field lower stands. But the coolest thing happened a minute later, the usher came running down the steps, which I thought "they're going to take the ball back". He took my dad's name and left. About 10 minutes later he returned with a "contract" signed by Auggie Busch Jr. I still have the ball, but not the contract. I also remember like it was yesterday Lou Brock catching a ball high off the left field fence. Being so close to the action made it a special experience. I've been to Wrigley, Fenway, Tiger stadium, Yankee stadium original, and they all have/had that intimacy that's hard to recreate today.


JCharles Binder, Woodland Hills, CA -- Apr 18, 2013 15:32 PM
1 visit(s). My rating: 5
I must have attended games at Sportsman's/Busch I dozens of times in the 50's and 60's. It was always a treat to go there. Night games you could see the towering lights from miles away while driving down Grand Avenue. One error in the author's narrative I would like to point out concerns the advertising at the ballpark. 1953 and prior to Gussie Busch's renovation, the outfield walls and scoreboard were plastered with ads. After the Browns left, all that advertising was removed. Atop the newly renovated scoreboard, Busch planted a Budweiser sign and an Anheuser-Busch logo (the "A" with a flying eagle). The flying eagle was not mechanized. Its motion was replicated by neon lighting that made it appear as if the eagle were flying. Otherwise, there was no other advertising in the ballpark. There was, however, a large Busch Bavarian billboard atop a building across the street, visible from the stands.


Zach LaFleur, Fowlerville, MI -- Apr 06, 2016 18:03 PM
1 visit(s). My rating: 7
Nice update on Sportsman's Park, Andrew! Now, if you want to go further back, try to include an 1881 diagram as well? This one will have the diamond and grandstand on the corner of Dodier Street and Grand Avenue (really similar to our old Bennett Park in Detroit, at the corner of Michigan and Trumbull Avenues)! There was about 100 years of baseball history here (at Sportsman's Park), dating back to August Solari and his purchase of the land in 1866, but the Browns moved to Baltimore and the Cardinals wanted to move downtown on the Mississippi Riverfront, so it is too bad that this park had to go!


Mike Davis, Tempe, AZ -- Apr 07, 2018 16:55 PM
1 visit(s). My rating: 5
My first trip to Sportman's Park and first major league was a double header between the Browns and Yankees. The most vivid recollection is my uncle, who was seated next to me, pointing out S. Paige lounging in the Browns bullpen. Subsequently, I've witnessed games at Busch I, Busch II and Busch III. Like very Cardinals fan of my generation, Stan 'The Man' was and still is, my hero and idol.



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