View Single Post
  #66  
Old 06-16-2019, 01:16 AM
TDog TDog is offline
WSI Prelate
 
Join Date: Aug 2003
Location: Modesto, California
Posts: 18,664
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by TomBradley72 View Post
I think there were a number of somewhat embarrassing instances for this franchise from the late 60's into the 70's.

Playing "home" games at County Stadium in Milwaukee
Inability to find a legit radio station to broadcast games in 1971 (ended up on a small AM station out of LaGrange)
Disco Demolition

But one that I really remember was in 1979/80 Comiskey Park hosted one of the "World Series of Rock" type concerts (all day, 4-5 bands)- it rained throughout the concert- so pretty much destroyed the field. For their next home game- at least half the outfield was just dirt/sand- NO grass. I can remember Claudell Washington standing out in RF with not a single blade of grass in sight- for me, that was more embarrassing than a promotion that got out of hand.
You cite things that were done because the team lacked resources. Disco Demotion wasn't about the team lacking resources. It was about the ownership lacking resources and being embarrassingly incompetent.

Playing nine regular season games (in each of the two seasons) in Milwaukee wasn't so different than the Royals playing a game in Omaha and a lot more different than the Expos playing more than 20 regular season games in Puerto Rico. At a time when the White Sox were the wildly unpopular team in the city playing in a wildly unpopular neighborhood, they turned nine games into events. Especially in a season of assassinations postponing games and riots pre-empting games from the radio, the Milwaukee games worked out nicely for the team. They never played an entire series in Milwaukee. The only problem was the perception that the team was going to move 90 miles north.

Being dropped by WMAQ after the 1970 season wasn't the idea of White Sox management. Considering no radio station wanted to buy the rights to their games, they did pretty well to patch together a network of FM stations to cover the area and scored Harry Caray, who has spent a year exiled in Oakland after the Cardinals fired him. Bill Veeck renting the ballpark out for rock concerts when the team was out of town brought in revenue. I've been to games in Oakland where the field was torn up and the football grid was still visible.

All of this is different than running a promotion that involved blowing up records on the field between games of a doubleheader. It was an incendiary promotion both figuratively and literally, and not the way that people use literally to mean figuratively. The idea was to bring people out to the park because of the passion behind the issue, but that passion was the reason the idea of such a promotion should have been shouted down. Approaching the event, when it was obvious there was going to be trouble, the team went through with it. Wearing shorts was fun bad. Disco Demolition was stupid, bordering on criminal bad.

I'm not a disco fan. I tell people I resent the fact that disco was popular during my college years, but I hate country music even more. Attacking country music in this country can get one in a lot more trouble on social media than attacking disco. It's not being too sensitive if you're in the majority. As much as I would have supported blowing up country records, I wouldn't demean the people attacking the celebration of the anniversary of such a thing and I wouldn't want the anniversary of such a baseball promotion.

Baseball promotions, like the summer festivals in Milwaukee and the promotions the Giants run all summer, are supposed to be inclusive. You would have to be an incompetent baseball executive not to understand that. Worse than Ten-Cent Beer Night in Cleveland, where cheap beer is something presumably everybody likes cheap beer, Disco Demolition was designed not to be inclusive, but to bring people together in opposition to something else. It was a divisive promotion put on by management that, in addition to not having resources, didn't know what they were doing.

It's hard enough to be a White Sox fan in California without the team making me look like an idiot by celebrating the anniversary of Disco Demolition.