Ozzie Smith - "The Wizard"
When I was about 12 years old, my family took a trip down to St. Louis, MO. I was living in my hometown, Peoria, IL, and my parents packed up the family, and headed about 3 hours southwest for our family vacation. This vacation was going to be special – we were going to a St. Louis Cardinals game! And not only this, we were going to get to see one of the great Cardinals players in that game – “The Wizard” Ozzie Smith – a 15-time All-Star, Baseball Hall of Famer.
This was also special because I was born in St. Louis while my father was in law school. A couple of years later we moved back to Peoria, IL to be close to family, but St. Louis still holds a special place in my heart, as do the St. Louis sports teams.
The game was awe-inspiring to this 12 year old boy. I think there’s even a picture in one of our old family albums of me on the field with “The Wizard” in the background. Every child has fond memories of times where they got close to the people they really look up to, whether it be a celebrity, sports figure, etc., and this was definitely one of mine. These people inspires us, and we feel like we can conquer the world when we’re watching them. That’s how I felt that day watching “The Wizard” play.
For the past several years, I haven’t had much time to go to baseball games or keep up. But, while I was living in Peoria, I would catch up every once in a while on a young rising star who got his start playing in 2000 for the Peoria Chiefs, the single-A Midwest League feeder team for the St. Louis Cardinals (at that time). Albert Pujols got his start playing in my hometown, had wowed people, moved up quickly in the ranks, and was playing for the Cardinals by 2001.
It was exciting to be following the Cardinals during this time. Pujols helped lead the Cardinals to victory in the World Series in 2006, and most recently in 2011, with Pujols matching Babe Ruth’s record of three home runs in a World Series game. The Cardinals hadn’t been this hot since they won the World Series in 1982.
Cardinals mania was at an all time high, and dang, was it fun to be a fan.
By 2011, I was living in Orange County, CA, but still following the Cardinals. So, I was really saddened when I heard that Pujols was leaving the Cardinals. “Are you crazy?!” I was thinking. “You’re letting this amazing player leave?!”
But then, I was thrown a twist. Albert Pujols would be coming to Orange County to play for the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim.
Jason Sporting His Pujols Jersey
This definitely helped soften the blow. Although saddened by the loss of the Cardinals, here was this All-Star player coming to play in our backyard! I guess if he had to leave, then this is definitely where I’d want him to come.
And I’m not the only GoldenComm fan to be excited over this news. The day after the Pujols news broke, Jason, our owner, came in to work flashing his big smile and wearing his very own custom-made Pujols Angels jersey. He proceeded to wear this jersey everywhere for the next week – around the office, in meetings, in front of clients, at his monthly SEO seminar, etc. You can see him in the picture giving his “Master Your Webmaster” SEO seminar while sporting his new attire.
Pujols-mania is high in Orange County, and Jason and our team at GoldenComm are proud to be a part of it. We all feel like 12 year old kids again, excited to see this baseball star work his magic in Orange County.
So now, even though I’ll always be a Cardinals fan at heart, I know we’re all really looking forward to Albert Pujols’ first season here in California.
For more information on this All-Star player, visit the Albert Pujols website.
Albert Pujols Joins The Angels
From all of us here at GoldenComm, we would like to extend a warm welcome to Albert Pujols. We’re excited for the 2012 season, and we welcome you to Orange County!