St. Joseph
Blacksnakes

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Mascot: "Roobie" (2006-)

"Roobie" (2006-)

Photo of Roobie
Roobie leading cheers (2006)

I don't know how he got his name (yet), but the "Roobie" the Blacksnake is about as friendly a snake as any kid might like to meet. As with any mascot he walks the stadium, often with an entourage that often includes new young fans.

Photo of Roobie
Roobie walking the crowd (2006)

Phil Welch Stadium

Photo of ballpark at night
Another great night for baseball at the Phil (2006)
Photo of SJ
Photo of SJ
Photo of SJ
Photo of SJ
Photo of SJ
Some of the SJ details
Photo of St. Jospeph names
Grandstand before a game (2006)

A great old ballpark

For those who've been around the Norhtern Leauge, "The Phil" is a "mix of The Wade and Mayo Park. It has the age (built 1939), roof, copious bench seating, and hard concrete outfield of the Wade. It has the openness, standard (flip-down) seating in the front rows, and many of the building limitations of Mayo Park. Like both it faces somewhat southeaster putting the sun in the left fielder's eyes.

Of course it may not be for all fans. The Phil, prior to the arrival of the American Association, has not kept up with the times and some amentities and conveniences are missing. Some may want cup holders, more and better concessions (and rest rooms), more "real seats" etc. But these are things that the Blacksnakes are working on and will likely improve with time.

For any fan, this is a great ballpark to watch a game. It's open, airy with the distinct character new ballparks cannot recreate. The details that went into this stadium include a full roof, solid brick/concrete walls with "SJ" (many confuse for a dollar sign: $) molded directly into them --on both sides. In fact, the original designers made sure that the name was found in all sorts of detailing.

Photo of St. Jospeph names
Photo of St. Jospeph names
Inside our out, you're in St. Joseph

An example of where improvements are happening are with the basics of the field. Prior to the inaugural season (2006), the team added real dugouts. This is probably more important to the players (who would tell you they'd like a better clubhouse). The press would like a more comfortable press box.

But for fans there is a lot of "real, original" brick; the great openness of the main seating areas where you can watch foul balls fall straight down on you from the sky above into the safety netting (and collect in "pools" at the front). The fact the outfield flag and light poles are in the field of play and help instill authentic character cannot be easily replicated. The basic facility is wonderful; time and investment can make it friendlier to more fans (players and staff).

Fans

Photo of St. Jospeph names
Sidewalk outside ballpark

Learning about the league

The fans in St. Joe are still taking to the club. The crowds at the ballpark are vocal (this is definitely not Canada) and interested in the game. The problem is that many don't know how good their club is this season and some still miss watching the "college boys."