Besides soaking up American culture, one of the most fun things to do when I was in Missouri was to visit baseball games. That’s right: plural. My first game was at the Kansas City Royals. Not the highest rated team ever, but the impression was very good nonetheless. The seats we were given were simply awesome (thank you again Meinkes). Close enough to follow every move made on the pitch and to fully experience the intensity on the field and at the same time get an impression of how big the stadium was.
The game itself was not the most spectacular baseball game ever. Not only did the Royals lose, not many points were scored either. The biggest surprise to me however was how few people took the game really serious. I am used to football (soccer) games. People that go to a football game do not want to miss a single minute of it. The intensity on the stands is severe, with chants filling the air and a shared sense of purpose from a psyched crowd that only cares for one thing those 90 minutes: a win. A baseball game however is more like a movie, just a good night out. Fans come from every social class, race, age and gender and are all very relaxed. People were walking around during the game to buy all kinds of beverages and missing an inning did not seem to affect the idea of being at a sports game. To me it seemed like a bonding experience. I was very surprised about one thing: fans were mixed. Due to the intensity (and the average IQ of hardcore football fans) fans of different football teams are clearly separated. Here, fans from both teams were sitting together. It all added to the relaxed atmosphere that filled the stadium. The game at the Saint Louis Cardinals was a little more tense, but still the relaxedness of fans really surprised me. I enjoyed the nice and calm vibe both stadiums had, although I also really like the intensity of a good football game. Which one do you prefer?