In case you lived under a rock shelter of Imos pizza boxes, you may have noticed the St. Louis Cardinals got eliminated by their bitter rival, the Chicago Cubs, this week in the NLDS. It wasn’t pretty, came too soon and I still haven’t completely shook it off yet. Apparently, some St. Louis writers love that the Cards are done, most notably Paul Friswold, the Arts and Culture editor for the Riverfront Times. He wrote this piece about his disdain for the Cards and why he is glad they are out of the playoffs. There are better methods to stating your opinion than spewing profanity in a derogatory manner that comes off like a four year whining about his toys. Maybe I am old fashioned.
The writer talks about the lack of coverage that the Blues get in relation to the Cards and how it’s not fair. This isn’t an invalid point. The Cards do get a lot of coverage throughout the year but they also produce a lot of collaborative work with the Blues and Rams. It isn’t their fault that the television networks and newspapers feature more of their team than the hockey team.
If this article was an attack on the networks or newspapers, it may have more juice and substance. This isn’t something new around St. Louis or other cities. There is always a team fanbase that wishes their team got as much attention as the other team. The Cards are definitely the big brother in the Lou, and this writer makes it seem as if they created this madness. That is inaccurate. The Cards didn’t step out onto Clark Avenue and scream, “We are kings and that is that.” They are a great franchise who works with local teams to better the city.
This isn’t a fluff piece. It isn’t good journalism. It is a hate piece that is unnecessary and brings a bad shade of black to Blues fans. I cover the Blues for St. Louis Game Time(yes, a Cardinals writer can also cover the Blues!) and our editor had this to say about the piece. A fair and measured rebuttal. In it, Laura Astorian says plainly, “When you’re a fan of a team that plays second fiddle, be it in your city or in that professional league, openly whining about it makes you seem petulant.” There isn’t a better way to hit the nail on the head. If you don’t like the Cardinals, that is one thing. Taking to your paper to openly complain and whine about “coverage” doesn’t make you seem any stronger.
Don’t get me wrong. RFT is a solid paper with good writers and a fair assortment of topics and a sharp edge, but this piece seemed out of touch and out of mind. I’ve read them for years and they have posted better pieces than this. It sounded more like a childish rant than a well thought out piece of commentary and all I do is write commentary, so I know where blunt ends and petulant begins.
Once again, if you hate the Cardinals, that is fine. Sports is a weird emotional chaotic ride of extremes and it brings out original reactions in people every year. If you hate them because they get more coverage than the Blues, that is not fine. Hating the Cardinals doesn’t make anyone a better Blues fan. It gives the rest of Blues fans a bad name. That is it. There are better way to express an opinion.
Hate the game, not the player. Write about the networks uneven coverage or the paper’s improper usage of ink. Don’t hate the team for establishing themselves as a powerhouse in the city.
What do you think of the article? What was your reaction?