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We’ve done a 360 on “The Best Fans in Baseball” thing

Apr 8, 2013, 11:06 AM EDT

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I’m not sure when the notion that Cardinals fans are “The Best Fans in Baseball” started. I think it was during the McGwire years or soon after when some high profile veterans chose to wind down their career in St. Louis, citing said fans as such.  And the claim was repeated without much criticism for several years after, even by folks with no connection to St. Louis. National broadcasters not named Buck and McCarver and such.

In recent years TBFiB thing has started to grow quotation marks, with many mockingly citing it or only citing it when Cardinals fans do something that demonstrates the opposite. Joe Strauss of the Post-Dispatch is great for that, by the way.  The point is, there is now way more of an eye-roll associated with TBFiB thing in the past couple of years, even if no one thinks the claim is particularly important one way or another.

Today Bernie Miklasz is going revivalist on the idea, giving a full-throated endorsement of Cardinals fans as The Best Fans in Baseball:

This [Best Fans in Baseball] boasting annoys other fan bases, especially in Cincinnati, Milwaukee and on the North Side of Chicago. I’m sure that Red Sox fans throughout New England would dispute the St. Louis claim. The New York Yankees’ faithful would likely offer a few choice, colorful words of dissent.

Except that deep down inside, they know it is true.

Brave stance for a St, Louis radio/newspaper guy to take.

(just kidding Bernie, love ya, baby)

  1. normcash - Apr 8, 2013 at 3:01 PM

    Interesting that nobody has mentioned Detroit in this discussion so far. They will draw over 3,000,000
    this year again and lead MLB in local TV ratings. They are 2nd in radio ratings. Unlike fans in some
    cities (say, Chicago (Cubs) and Boston), Tiger fans come to see the baseball game, not to participate
    in a yuppie social event. There was a day last year when the Tigers played to 42,000 in the afternoon, the Lions drew 65,000 across the street a few hours later, Michigan drew 110,000 to
    The Big House and MSU drew 76,000 to Spartan Stadium. Granted, the Cardinals do amazingly well, especially considering the disadvantages they have compared with the New York, New England
    and LA regions. They have been fortunate in that the Cards has been consistently competitive for many, many years. I wonder how things would be if they hit a sustained bad patch? I’ll never forget the next-to-last day of the ’03 season when the Tigers were one loss away from matching the ’62
    Mets for futility. 15,000 turned out and a college football Saturday to see the Tigers rally in the final
    3 innings to overcome a 8-1 deficit and win. You’d have thought they’d clinched the pennant from
    the way the fans reacted. Same ting the next day when 18,000 turned up on the final day of the year.
    They drew almost 1.4 million that season to watch the worst season in AL history—the third year
    in a row of god-awful teams. I wonder how St. Louis or Boston would do in a similar situation?

  2. forsch31 - Apr 8, 2013 at 5:54 PM

    I’ve always said this: The second you proclaim your team as having the “best fans in baseball” is the very second you disprove that notion.

    Never liked it. And I like St. Louis fans who act like it’s a fact even less. It’s about the game, people, not the goofs like me in the stands.

  3. cardsfan773 - Apr 8, 2013 at 7:03 PM

    Seems a lot of people care too much about us Cardinals fans. Take this issue up with the many players (both cards, as well as opponents) who continue to say these things. Even Phillips of the Redshas said it in the past. If you dont like it, dont worry about it. Not our fault your teams suck (joke)

  4. cardsfan773 - Apr 8, 2013 at 7:04 PM

    Also Larue was a Red before, so he would know both sides.

  5. cardsfan773 - Apr 8, 2013 at 7:07 PM

    Hey Normcash. We drew 2.5 mil on average between 87-96 (all poor seasons when a owner who hated the team was selling off players) If Det has soo much extra cash laying around why is the city trying to avoid bankruptcy

    • normcash - Apr 8, 2013 at 7:25 PM

      In those 8 years the Cards had one last place finish, one fifth-place finish and one fourth-place
      finish. the other 5 years they finished 3rd 4 times and second once. Overall, a competitive record. When you finish with 90+ losses for 5 years in a row, and still draw over 2,000,000…
      let me know. The finances of the city government in Detroit is, of course, irrelevant to this
      discussion. 95% of the fans attending Tigers games are from the burbs or outstate, which I’m
      sure is true in St. Louis and most other MLB cities as well.

  6. cardsfan773 - Apr 8, 2013 at 7:09 PM

    Last thing. I have been a Cards fan alll ny life, but I dont like that statement either. No matter who you root for, as long as you LOVE baseball you are one of the Best Fans In Baseball

  7. cardsfan773 - Apr 8, 2013 at 8:22 PM

    How does the finances of your city not enter the equation. You all agreed to pay $300 mil in tax money to build 2 new stadiums, now your broke. Probably no coincidence though.

  8. schmedley69 - Apr 8, 2013 at 8:35 PM

    I grew up in Baltimore, and at the time (late 70’s – mid 90’s), they liked to think of themselves as the best fans in baseball. Then they had a soul-sucking 10-year-long losing streak which pretty much killed off half the fan base. There’s no doubting that the Cardinals have good fans, but the Cardinals have always been a model franchise and haven’t suffered through too many long down periods like a lot of other franchises have. It would be interesting to see if the Cardinal fans would still show up in droves and be so happy go lucky if they finished in last place for 10 straight years. St. Louis was never a great football town, and maybe that stemmed from the fact that the football Cardinals pretty much always stunk.

  9. yahmule - Apr 9, 2013 at 9:53 AM

    Excessive regional pride is strongly indicative of a lack of intelligence.

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