For Toronto Blue Jays fans
Know Where Are You Going and Remember Where You Have Been
The Toronto Blue Jays management team has always had a great fan base. It all started in 1977 during that first sell-out game at Exhibition Stadium where Doug Ault hit two home runs to help the local club win 9-5 against the Chicago White Sox. The game had everything! Hits, runs, strikeouts and snow. Typical. We Canadians always seem to add our own touch to big occasions. Maybe we will build an indoor facility one day, we thought. Man it was cold that day, even with a winter coat!
Some will argue it all started the year before when the league found out the San Francisco Giants were thinking of moving to Canada. Toronto was ripe for the picking. The area fan base was yearning for a baseball team of its own. Labatt’s Breweries Ltd. of Canada, Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce and Vulcan Assets Ltd. agreed to buy the team from Harold Stoneham for $13.25 million but another group led by Bob Lurie, a real estate magnate and philanthropist, bought the team for $8 million and kept it in Candlestick Park. The Toronto fateful were disappointed but we all knew that we would get a team eventually. We deserved it.
The fan base was built on discount bleacher seats. In succeeding years, the special offer stood and it was combined with the realization that you could watch the world champion New York Yankees for $2 playing in your own backyard!
Back then, you could not buy a drink of beer for $10. In fact, you could not buy it at Exhibition Stadium for any price. Selling beer was not permitted. It seemed strange to everyone that a team owned in part by a brewery could not sell their own product.
It did not seem to matter to the fans. We all knew the government would allow the sales sooner or later. There was just too much money to be made.
So you get the idea that with a little patience, all good things will come to the Blue Jays faithful. We finally got our team, then we got our beer and now we have the stadium to put it in. Hey, we even have a couple of championships to show for it. This was not a case of “build it and they will come” but rather expect the best and it will come.
Proving that Blue Jays fans are human, hope springs eternal. We are starting to get the feeling that something great is about to happen once again. The players we are watching improve every game. Those who don’t improve are replaced by players who are better. It is fun to watch.
Although we have little to do with what is happening on the field – we are enjoying the ride.