This is a map of the landscape of professional baseball in 1991. There were 26 Major League teams and 152 cities and towns with teams in the affiliated Minor Leagues known then as the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues and now simply referred to as Minor League Baseball. Between April 9th of that year in Oakland and October 6th at Yankee Stadium my travel companion Sue Easler and I we went to a game in each of these 178 parks. A few, as in any season, were rained out. One game was even relocated when the Montreal Expos were forced to play a home series at Wrigley Field in Chicago after the Olympic Stadium roof began to crumble. But 54,000 miles after leaving the Bay Area we made it.
We shot videotape (you may need to Google what this looks like) at each of the parks and sent it back to Major League Baseball Productions where, through some amazingly skillful editing, they made it look presentable and turned it into a segment that became known as “Bill & Sue’s Excellent Adventure,” which ran on ESPN every week.
Because of this, we became a little famous for awhile. Sports Illustrated, the New York Times, CNN, ABC News, NBC News and lots of local media did stories about our quest and after our last stop we appeared on Good Morning America.
I tried several times to write a book about the experience over the years but earlier in my life I wasn’t ready and later, I was too busy. But now 30 years on, In League with America, my original title for the book, is finally beginning to take shape. I will share more information about it as soon as I can. In the meantime, I hope you enjoy a daily look back at a ballpark and the game that took place in it 30 summers ago.
April 9, 2021