Monday, July 27, 2015
Biloxi Shuckers Begin Season on 55-Game Roadtrip
This is kind of an old story at this point, but for those who do not know, the minor-league Biloxi Shuckers recently completed a 55-game roadtrip to start their season this year. A very long story short: the team had moved this year from Hunstville, Alabama to Biloxi and was promised a new stadium by the city in time for the 2015 season, but a variety of delays due to budget and contractor issues pushed the opening back to June 6th. In any other situation involving a new ballpark and a delay, this wouldn't be a big deal, but since the team was moving and its lease was up in Huntsville, it forced the Shuckers to essentially live as hobos for 2 months, driving around to different cities in the Southern League while living out of hotels and suitcases. There is a lot of finger pointing and liquidated damages that go along with this - as would be the case in any construction project that did not meet a deadline - but the fact that it is a ballpark and a primarily publicly-financed ballpark at that, this has been much more prominent in industry circles. What makes it an even better story is that through all of the adversity, the team still somehow managed to win the first half title, despite not having any fans to celebrate that achievement with. ESPN actually did a nice piece on their tribulations, which was really when this story started picking up national media attention.
I've been following this for quite some time before that, not only because I am a ballpark enthusiast, but because Biloxi is the Double-A affiliate of the Brewers. Much like my trip to Nashville this year, I have been waiting for the team to get out of their s***hole stadium before I visited. MGM Park is still far from being complete; they barely squeaked by with a temporary occupancy permit and continue to finish things while the team is away. But with this saga nearly behind the team and the city, I look forward to a future visit. The new Braves stadium is less than two years away, and Biloxi might very well get rolled into an Erik + Peter 10-year anniversary "Dirty South" Tour.
STANDINGS AND UPCOMING SERIES AS OF 07.27:
Brewers 43-56, -20.5, -11.5 WC (3 @ Giants, 4 v. Cubs)
Reds 43-53, -19.0, -10.0 WC (3 @ Cardinals, 4 v. Pirates)
Twins 52-46, -7.5, +3.0 WC (2 v. Pirates, 4 v. Mariners)
2015 GAMES ATTENDED:
Erik - 13 (+14 worked)
Peter - 30