Hate Mail (Mostly) From Cardinals Fans

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Our recent coverage of the St. Louis Cardinals has elicited many responses from our readers. Some of them are angry, some of them less so.

Subject: Hey fuck-wad

From: Ryan Ortbais
To: Drew Magary

I get you're jealousy with the cardinals. Don't lie. You're jealous. Anybody that has that much hate for a baseball team is jealous. You talk shit on things you have no idea about.

Everyone has something that they are proud of . Well maybe not you. Don't talk shit on people or cultures that you have no clue about.

I know you hide behind your computer and talk shit all day on people you are ultimately jealous of. You are nothing but a spinless coward . Get out of your parents basement and get a real job. You are not even a real journalist. You're a blogger.

Get educated and write about real world problems.

Oh, one more thing. The best journalism school is the University of Missouri. Same state as the best team in baseball.

Fuck you and your shitty family and whatever hole you live in .

Subject: Drew Magary

From: Chris Ambrose
To: Deadspin staff

It's cool if you Magary hates the Cards. It's cool if Magary wants to poke fun at Mayor Slay for his oddly irrelevant stats in a piece meant to defend the Cards.

A lot of people don't like the Cards and to be honest, the vast majority of us cringe when we hear someone at a bar or Cards game say the 4 words that drives the hatred from outsiders. I'll never handstand why certain people feel they constantly have to defend the team and all fans. If some ass clown starts spouting off to a Dodgers/Brewers/Giants fan, that doesn't mean that we have to all jump in and fight in the name of Cards fans around the world.

That's not to say that if a fight broke out and I was somehow involved, I wouldn't pick sides. I'll finish my Busch beer and join the ranks of Birds fans. I have friends from all over and they love their cities sports teams just as much as I do. Who's the clown that dubbed us Cards fans as "The Best in Baseball" and what in the world was the scoring system? I'm sure in terms of pure fan support, most players would like to play in St. Louis. But why & how that means we're the best fans is beyond me.

When someone tells me they hate the Cards, you can just see them getting ready for me to respond with, "FUCKYOUWERETHEBESTFANSINBASEBALL". You can feel the arsenal of comments they've saved up for weeks, going over potential comebacks like George Costanza (Jerk Store, I slept with your wife, etc.). The delusional anticipation and look in their eyes is strangely terrifying. When I reply with a "Neat" or "I would hope you don't like them, you're a Cubs/Brewers/Dodgers/Pirates fan" they have the same look a 5 yr old would have if he saw his mom & dad putting the Santa presents under the tree.

If you aren't from St. Louis or you are a fan of another team, I, and any other decently rational thinking human, assume you don't like the Cards. It's not noteworthy that a Pirates fan doesn't like the Cards. The hatred of other teams and the loyalty to your cities team is what makes sports so much to be involved in. If everyone liked every other team, city & fan base it would fucking boring. The hatred of the Cards felt by so many is an incredibly integral part to the success & passion here in St. Louis. So keep hating the Cards, I actually respect you for that. It means you're passionate. But please know 2 things; One, If you hate the "Best Fans in Baseball" line then you and I have something in common. Secondly, i don't own the Cards, I don't play for the Cards, I'm not employed by the Cards. I think I have 3rd cousin (whatever the fuck that means) who had a cup of coffee with them in spring training about 8 years ago. So thinking that I should be personally offended by your hatred of the team I support is so incredibly idiotic. Aside from you contributing to the rivalry between your team and mine, if you employ the 4 year olds tactic of arguing; repeating the same thing over and over and refusing to have a real discussion (i.e. "CARDSSUCKYOUSUCKFUCKYOUIHATEYOU), I don't fucking care what you think, that doesn't mean I dislike you, it may be the simple Midwestern boy in me, but at the end of the day I'll probably still offer to buy you a cold pop.

Now with all thy said, back to Magary. I like reading his stuff & have for years. It's honest, usually funny & at times over the top. I'm fully aware he has a job to do & it appears as though he has carved out a nice niche in the journalism world. Clearly he's fed up with the Cards and has been for years and that's fine. But in his piece about the op-ed Mayor Slay wrote, Magary took a few too many liberties and crossed the line. Clearly Mayor Slay's piece contained irrelevant St. Louis facts that have nothing to do with baseball. If Magary wants to rip him for that, thats fine. Having a ton of Bosnians here has absolutely nothing to do with baseball (that I'm aware of). Now that and some other facts may be irrelevant, but they're true.

At the beginning of his piece Magary said, "He took time off from arming the police with rail guns...". Now I'm not Magary so I don't know what he was referencing specifically. For all I know Magary & the Mayor play video games together and the Mayor sold some guns during the game. But it could also be a reference to what happened in Ferguson. Magary routinely uses some degree of sensationalism in his pieces which is cool, if what he says is true. In this piece Magary was stunned by the irrelevant facts laid out by Mayor Slay. So if he rips into that aspect of the Mayors piece, shouldn't the reader expect that Magary would use only relevant information to get his point across? On the other hand, if Magary did throw in irrelevant information, he would look like a complete idiotic hypocrite. I personally know I wouldn't want to come across as that but if Magary doesn't care, that's OK. But in the course of his piece, if he wrote something not only irrelevant but completely false and misleading, then that's inexcusable, especially if it's referencing the Ferguson shooting. I know the phrase "out of context" is used entirely too much in the sports and political worlds. There aren't enough people in either profession who say what they mean & stand by it, I don't have to agree with what everyone thinks or says and if your thoughts and opinions aren't hurting anyone then think and say what you want. However, in this case the Mayor was neither misquoted or had his quotes regarding the Ferguson shooting taken out of context. That's because Mayor Slay never supported the actions of the police in Ferguson. There were 3 separate police forces involved in Ferguson; Ferguson PD, St. Louis COUNTY & the Mo. HP. Now I trust that you're an educated person who can read and use logical thinking skills. Out of the 3 police forces involved, Mayor Slay was responsible for exactly zero of them. In a world when far too many people try to play both sides and make the PC remark, Mayor Slay & the SLPD Chief decided to be poignant & take a firm stance on the issue of the militarization of police forces. They both denounced the actions of the Ferguson & County PDs. They didn't have a spokesman do it and they made sure they were clear in their thoughts on it. The SLPD Chief & Mayor Slay were both asked to support the other police forces and both of them declined to do so until the string-armed military style tactics stopped. This wasn't done on some local public access channel, their comments weren't "leaked" by anyone. Both men spoke publicly and were firm in their opinions. Here are just some of Mayor Slay's comments, pay special attention to the last comment. These are from this article - .

MayorSlay.com @MayorSlay 1h

In the earliest days, the influential voices belonged to Michael Brown's parents. Let them be heeded again. #fgs

MayorSlay.com @MayorSlay 1h

It is my strongest hope that subsequent events do not delay or obscure swift justice in the Michael Brown case. #fgs

MayorSlay.com @MayorSlay 2h

I have spoken to federal, MO, county officials, expressed these views and offered the city's experience. #fgs

MayorSlay.com @MayorSlay 2h

I think it is imperative to distinguish between protest and violence. Only the latter warrants arrest. #fgs

MayorSlay.com @MayorSlay 2h

I question many of the tactics used in Ferguson, especially the arrest of journalists. #fgs

The biggest issue with The comments made by Magary is that all of that information above was found with a quick Google search. Something an 8 year old could do. So is Magary just an incompetent idiot that doesn't understand how to gather factual information. It would have take 2 minutes to verify Mayor Slay's involvement.

Or is Magary just an asshole who knows Mayor Slay, the most influential City politician in the state, actually used his voice and position of power to denounce the actions of other municipalities police forces & declined to join the other police forces until they stopped playing G.I. Joes and still decided to print the article? What Magary wrote isn't a matter of opinion and what Mayor Slay said isn't open for interpretation. The comments made by the Mayor and the Chief were honest and made knowing that not everyone would agree. The Chief and Mayor both faced major backlash from politicians and police forces from all over the country. Neither of them came back to "clarify" their comments. Neither of them claimed their comments were "taken out of context". Whether or not you agree with their stance, you have to admire their clear stance and the fact they weren't trying to play both sides or release the PC comments. The entire country (and parts of the world) were watching. St. Louis people, me included like to say our city is still a major city in America but we say that because we're afraid of the truth; we've been declining in terms of influence for decades. If there was ever a time for Mayor Slay to become a political celebrity, it was during this event. Most politicians would take the chance and run with it. They'd pull out all the fire and brimstone tactics, they'd make sure they were visible at all times. But not Mayor Slay. Slay is fully aware he's not the mayor of Ferguson and he has no real political power there. Aside from his influence, he doesn't dictate what happens outside of his city. He knew this story involved an 18 yr old being shot and killed by a white police officer. He knew that it's arguably the most important civil rights issue since Rodney King. Most politicians get a chubby thinking about a chance to be in front of the entire world. Sadly, many politicians try to advance their careers and capitalize on a death or other tragic event. Mayor Slay clearly identified his thoughts & doesn't care what you or anyone else thinks. His honesty was refreshing and regardless of your personal opinion of his thoughts, it should make you proud to say you live in St. Louis. He's my Mayor & you don't need to know my personal beliefs on specific issues, but you should know that my Mayor strayed well off the path of most politicians. He said his piece & refused to bend on those beliefs. He refused to be the face of the tragedy because besides being mayor of a city about 15 miles from Ferguson, Slay has no political power. When asked to join the other police said no, when asked why he said he didn't approve of their tactics. That's cut and dry. Mayor Slay wasn't going to use a tragedy to further his career. He laid out what needed to happen if Ferguson PD & the County wanted their help. He made it clear that help would NOT include passing out military style guns, or as Magary called them "rail guns".

People complain all the time about politicians not being honest and doing things solely for personal advancement. Mayor Slay did and said exactly what we all expect of our elected officials.

Yet after speaking from the heart & putting his political career on the line by telling us his honest thoughts, idiots like Magary think they have the right to demand more of our elected officials, but only when it helps their career and helps the sale of their paper/book/blog. If Mayor Slay sees that article, he'll realize that even if he actually does what we want out of our political officials, an idiot like Magary can come along and not just stretch the truth but print completely fabricated and false accusations.

Magary could have written the article and it still would have been printed. I'll be the first to tell you a lot of the op-ed was completely irrelevant and nothing to do with baseball. But at least Mayor Slay used facts, irrelevant as they may be, they're still facts. Magary printed something that was not only irrelevant, but it was complete bullshit.

So please tell me, is Magary just a totally incompetent journalist that doesn't the most basic and simplistic of journalistic rules and who is a total idiot who doesn't know how to use Google to make sure what he's printing is at least remotely true. Or is Magary a prick who knew Mayor Slay's level of involvement and beliefs on the issues in Ferguson and decided to print totally false "information"? There's no right answer here, but hopefully he's just an idiot who isn't aware how easy it is to find information the 21st century. If he's an idiot there's at least some hope that someone at Deadspin can teach him how to use Google and explain to him the difference between a fact and an opinion.

From: Tim Marchman
To: Chris Ambrose


Subject: St. Louis

From: Charles
To: Drew Magary

Dear Deadspin,

I am not entirely sure why I'm writing this, but I'm a big fan of the site, and while that doesn't mean I co-sign on everything you publish, I'm an overall appreciator of the form of journalism you gentlemen choose to engage in with the sports-hungered masses our country possesses. It's a fun site and a departure from the dry-leaf publications that can be found elsewhere.

That all to be said, I'm from St. Louis and I love it as well as the Cardinals more than anything. Believe me, I get it, people don't like us. I really don't care. However, the bizarre fetish that is your hating on STL and Cards fans has really gotten stale and, at this juncture, just looks childish. I get that it's fun to take a shit on certain things, but haven't we had enough already? Must I also add that projecting onto fan bases and simply summarizing them as a whole is ridiculously ignorant? We're not all like you believe us to be (side note, not that this will change any minds, but almost none of us refer to ourselves as BFIB; you can thank the media for that designation).

Additionally, if we don't matter and are so inferior as you all believe with all your heart, soul, and strength, then why speak of us? Get over it, man. We suck, move on, I don't give a shit what you guys think, I'll still read the site and root for the Cardinals until I die. My team is better than your team, so eat a proverbial shit. All I'm asking is that you keep the levity of the situation intact if you so choose to continue lampooning Cards fans. Don't be an incessantly sneering ass about it. It's not worth your time, and if anyone gets a genuine pride boner over belittling a fan base, any fan base, then they're a dim, small person with little perspective in this life.

Keep up the good work. I'd be surprised if you found this all to be objectionable, but if you do, no worries, we'll still get along.

Go Cards,

- Charles

Subject: Cardinals fans

From: Barry Smith
To: Tom Ley


Not all Cardinal fans are idiots like the ones you show. There is no excuse for their behavior. The entire Ferguson situation is a tragic event for the entire community. There has been a lot of good going on, but the media never shows that. The media has showed protesters looting and burning businesses in their own community. They have showed protesters threatening to attack the metro area unless officer Wilson is tried for murder. Protesters told the St. Louis County board to bring their army, they will need it. This is what the public is seeing and hearing. I'm not blaming the media, but this is the reality of what is happening. You can't believe all the progress taking place within the state and county to correct and improve life for all citizens, black and white. Will it work, hopefully it will for the sake of all of us.

Barry Smith

Ballwin, Missouri

Subject: Mayor of St. Louis

From: Chris Ambrose
To: Drew Magary

Bashing Mayor Slay for his comments about St. Louis in that piece is OK. You're not alone in your disgust for the Cardinals & to be honest, I've never understood why so many fellow Cards fans feel the need to justify our city & team to people who don't like either. If you don't like the Cards that's fine, I could not give less of a shit.

Your article about Mayor Slay was cute; written in your comical (and I'm serious, it's funny shit, most of your pieces are funny). I'll be the first to admit some of his comments were pretty irrelevant to baseball (I'm still trying to figure out what Bosnians have to do with baseball).

There is one glaring mistake in your piece. This is not a personal opinion or blind loyalty to my city or the Cards. You make fun of Mayor Slay for irrelevant statistics & facts about St. Louis, but they're all true. But what about your irrelevant comments? Not only are some of them irrelevant, they're also false. And not in a "taken out of context" false, but in a "did you do ANY fucking research before submitting your piece", false. You were clearly implying Mayor Slay had a hand in arming the police following the Michael Brown killing. If you took the time to even a quick Google search you'd find out that your completely wrong...

- Mayor Slay is the mayor of the City of St. Louis. Michael Brown was killed in Ferguson. You'll note that "St. Louis" & "Ferguson" sound absolutely nothing alike. So confusing the 2 seems almost impossible. Ferguson is it's own municipality with their own mayor & police force. Mayor Slay has absolutely zero involvement with either.

- The Ferguson PD originally handled the investigation. They then handed it off to St. Louis COUNTY who in turn passed it to the Mo. HP.

- In between the County passing the investigation to the HP, the CITY of St. Louis PD was asked to help. This was during the most contentious part of the riots/looking/shootings. During this time both Mayor Slay & the City of St. Louis Police Chief declined the invitation turn Ferguson into a war zone. They didn't try to beat around the bush or say the politically correct thing; they publicly denounced the actions by the Ferguson PD & the County PD. Now, the Chief was much more vocal when it came to this but you'd have to be an idiot to think Mayor Slay didn't have a hand in that decision. They did eventually help crowd control in Ferguson, but they refused to do so until the majority if the military style tactics stopped.

- Any decisions made in the last month or so have been made by Eric Holder and the Chief of the HP. Many of the decisions have been made behind closed doors but it's clear that Holder had some impact on decisions.

The fact that you think Mayor Slay & the city PD Chief had involvement is so incredibly uneducated and wildly inaccurate. Mayor Slay did the exact opposite of contributing to the strong-arm tactics; he refused to contribute to a situation he didn't agree with. Everyone bashes politicians for not being direct & being too PC. But with so many fucking idiots who can't seem to figure out the Google machine, why would Mayor Slay put his neck on the line if people like you want to create a headline? You didn't just stretch the truth to create an attention grabbing, National Enquirer style sentence; you flat out didn't research and thus made veiled accusations about Mayor Slay.

It's like you you saw the comments Slay mad & had to find out something else he's done in order to justify calling him a dipshit. Again, I'm sure you can find something he's done that you don't agree with. You may have even actually researched this, I don't know. If you did, you found that any issues involving Mayor Slay are strictly political & center mostly around groups/organizations/individuals being pissed because something didn't go their way & they blame May Slay. You & I both know that those issues are boring, nobody cares about that shit. But you had a piece to finish & some light-hearted, strangely irrelevant St. Louis facts we're enough to get people's attention. You had to grab people so they'd continue reading, because if you didn't, the reader would realize you just quoted an already written article & added humorous zingers and one liners below.

It's like you thought, "Oh ya, I know how I can make fun of Mayor Slay for his irrelevant stars and facts about St. Louis. I'll use a completely irrelevant event that involves a man getting shot and killed. Nobody gives a shit that the City of St. Louis & Mayor Slay had absolutely zero involvement in what happened in Ferguson. Nobody cares that Mayor Slay & the Chief publicly denounced the actions in Ferguson involving the militarization of police. I'll just lie, it's not like I give a fuck. It's not like I have a job that has the power in influence people. Who cares if I accuse a man of being involved in a nationally prominent civil rights issue."

Mayor Slay threw some strange & irrelevant St. Louis facts that have nothing to do with baseball.

You bash Slay for his irrelevant comments, that's fine. But why are you given the freedom to not only use irrelevant information but to actually put out false information?


Subject: On Cardinals fandom

From: Anonymous
To: Tommy Craggs

I like baseball a lot. In 1996, when I was a kid, my family moved from Nebraska to central Illinois — right on the Cards-Cubs line. There's not really a natural rooting interest for Nebraskans, the Cubs sucked, and the Cardinals were pretty good. I was impressionable, so that was that: my first favorite team was the Cardinals. It stuck.

I'm not going to whine about the BFIB thing. It's stupid, people who buy into it are generally mouth-breathers who I don't want to talk to, and I laugh along when it gets mocked.

I'm also not going to whine about mocking the Cardinals self-imposed "classy organization that does things the Cardinal Way" thing. Franchises build up their own mythology, and that opens them up to snark when their conduct doesn't match up. Fine. To be frank, the La Russa-Pujols years really did feature some joyless, stick-in-the-ass "Cardinal Way" attitudes that deserved a lot of the scorn they've drawn. I've been glad to see that stuff fading away with the current team. Kolten Wong's game 3 bat flip, Fat Adams's adorable attempts to jump for joy last night, and Joe Kelly (sentimental Cardinal for life) refusing to sit down after the anthem and dancing in the outfield are stuff baseball needs more of, not less.

Anyway, I wouldn't have taken the time to write any of this but for the racist idiots being racist idiots towards the Mike Brown protesters. I've seen a lot of #notallcardsfans responses, to which I have two reactions:

1. Absolutely, not all of us. For example, not me.

2. Yes, but still, those Cards fans. And a lot of others.

So, to fellow Cards fans who want to make the #notall argument: go look at a map of Cardinalsterritory. It's most of Missouri, southern Illinois, southeast Indiana, western Kentucky and Tennessee, most of Arkansas, and eastern Oklahoma. Even a little sliver of Mississippi in there. Compare that to a map of Obama-Romney county level results. Just demographically speaking — ignoring the diaspora of people who move to other parts of the country (who, again just looking at it demographically, skew liberal) — that means that most Cardinals fans are white and conservative. And, yes, a lot of them (not all, but a big enough number) have racial politics that make right-thinking people uncomfortable. This is a real thing for anybody who roots for any team with a white, conservative fandom: you're going to share a favorite team with... kind of a lot of racists. (And no, #notallwhiteconservatives. But some!)

Which brings me to my only real point: the stuff those drunk morons were yelling at the protesters the other night was terrible. But the part that really got to me, beyond "hey those people suck," was that one of the weapons they used alongside the racial invective was a chant of LETS GO CARDINALS.

Hey white, conservative, not-all-racist-but-some-definitely-racist Darren Wilson supporters: fuck you, the St. Louis Cardinals do not belong to you. You do not get to invoke them in support of your agenda. You do not get to use them to divide yourselves, "real" whatever-you-ares, from a marginalized racial minority. You are embarrassing yourselves, which is fine by me, but you are also embarrassing the rest of us. Jesus, knock it off, or at least take it to facebook where nobody will ever see it.

I don't expect a smug, self-satisfied subset of Cards fans to stop thinking of all "Cardinals fans" as the BFIB, as if the laundry we root for tells us anything about ourselves other than that we like baseball and probably live or grew up in a certain region of the country. I don't expect that, any more than I'd expect Deadspin writers with quotas and deadlines to stop mailing in easy jabs at "Cardinals fans" writ large, using the same kind of thinking. But because human brains like to use easy categories like "Cardinals fans" so much, I'd really appreciate if racists would stop acting like I'm on their side because I like the same baseball team they do.

Sign me anonymous if you use this at all. Thanks for the time.

Subject: Political commentary

From: Doug Bentele
To: Tommy Craggs

Thanks for all the political commentary lately, but enough is enough. I'm referring to Ley's article about the Horrible Cardinal fans screaming at "protesters" and most recently an article about Cowherd and blacks not being fans of hockey and whether that is ok or not?

On the St. Louis note, unless you've lived here, been held hostage by this situation, don't judge. I would further ask this. That if you are going to cast your wide net, have the balls to report what happens at the end of this thing. If you won't do that then don't fly in here for a couple nights a year and offer your bullshit opinions on a very complicated situation or how people should conduct themselves. Stick to balls and strikes.

Secondly, ask a black man if he gives a shit about the "racial inequalities present in the socio-economic dynamic of the sport of hockey" and hopefully he'll tell you that you are as full of shit as that pipe Andy Dufrane had to crawl through to get to Mexico.


Subject: My apologies, sort of

From: Aaron Finkel
To: Tom Ley

Hi Tom. I called you a leech on twitter. I apologize. I should have emailed you instead.

Ferguson is so fucking important and the people shouting "africa africa" are so fucking disgusting, that "Go Dodgers" trivializes the whole thing. Want to write a piece about people acting like racist assholes at baseball games and use Busch as the locus? Great. I'll read it. I might try to write it.

But picking out a dozen people acting like monsters and throwing it on as a patch on the #BFIB quilt that's been sewn over the last few years sure is a bad look, and if you're writing about this at deadspin without any substantive thoughts, that's what you're doing. It's like showing some gang violence in LA with a couple of people wearing Dodgers gear and writing "Go Giants."

You're trivializing important shit. Trivialize unimportant shit like Jeter gossip and the stupid radio station giving out the #BFIB shirts. Write substantively about the important shit if you're going to cover it.

Am I wrong? Perhaps I'm just being a sanctimonious cardinals fan becauseyouknowhowtheyare.

What do you think?

Subject: Cards Fans vs. Ferguson Protesters

From: Brian Gunn
To: Tom Ley

Hi Tom,

Thank you for your piece today about ugly Cardinals fans. I actually wrote an article over the weekend that criticizes the anti-Cardinals backlash from places like Deadspin, Grantland, Bloomberg, et al. I still think that many of the pieces Deadspin runs are logically flawed (including a piece you wrote last Fall, which showed Cardinals players celebrating as an example of hypocrisy, which rests almost entirely on a piece of misreporting).

That said, after reading your article about the clashes between Cardinals fans and Ferguson protesters, I'm now embarrassed to be defending St. Louisans. I'm sure these racists are not representative of the overwhelming majority of Cardinals fans (and to be sure, most of the Ferguson protesters and Michael Brown himself are Cards fans as well), but there are enough bigoted yahoos in the video to reflect poorly on St. Louis as a whole. They're a complete disgrace.

So thank you for helping me change my mind.

Hope all is well,

Brian Gunn