The St. Louis Cardinals, the second most successful team in Major League Baseball, have played at a version of Busch Stadium since Anheuser-Busch purchased Sportsman’s Park back in 1953. This is the third version of Busch Stadium, with the previous one – referred to as Busch Memorial Stadium – demolished in 2005. The new Busch Stadium opened on April 4th, 2006, with the third facility built over two years at a cost of $365 million.
It took a while for the funding to be put together for this stadium, with lobbying efforts that started in 1995 by the owners of the team. In the early 2000s, initial proposals for funding were struck down by state legislature, eventually leading to an agreement that involved private funding and loans from the city of St. Louis and other sources. The ballpark village created around the stadium was built at a cost of about $300 million.
Busch Stadium was completed in downtown St. Louis, close to the Mississippi River. While the old Busch Stadium was named in honor of Gussie Busch, who not only built the largest brewer in the world, but also owned the Cardinals and previous versions of the stadium. The current Busch Stadium refers to the company itself, which bought the naming rights for the stadium until 2026.
St. Louis Cardinals Stadium
The St. Louis Cardinals are the second winningest team in the history of Major League Baseball, earning a total of 11 World Series titles. Only the New York Yankees have been more successful, earning 27 World Series championships. Similar to the Yankees, the Cards have dominated the National League like the Yanks lord over the American League, taking the Central Division eight times since the year 2000 while earning wild card berths three times.
In both the 2014 and 2015 campaigns, the Cardinals have won 50 games at home during the regular season, proving that they’re one of the most difficult teams to defeat when they have home field advantage. They look to finish with both the best home and overall record in the MLB in 2015, entering as the favorite to win it all.
The MLB Park Factor stats for 2015 list Busch Stadium near the bottom in terms of the rate of runs production, suggesting that Busch Stadium is a pitcher’s ballpark. Home run production is also towards the bottom of the league, although hits, doubles and triples rank in or near the top third of the league, implying that small ball does better than the big blast in terms of creating offense at this venue.
Date Opened: April 4, 2006
Construction Cost: $365 million
Architect: Populous; Kennedy Associates/Architects Inc.; HOK
Ballpark Type: Retro Classic
Capacity Attendance: 46,861
Playing Surface: Kentucky Bluegrass
Previous St. Louis Cardinals Stadiums
Sportsman’s Park; Robison Field
Other Major Events
2009 MLB All-Star Game
The 2009 MLB All-Star Game took place on July 14th, 2009, featuring President Barack Obama throwing the ceremonial first pitch while wearing a jacket adorned with his hometown Chicago White Sox team. The American League won by a score of 4-3, earning home field advantage during the World Series.
Southeast Missouri State played against the Southern Illinois University Carbondale team on September 21st, 2013, marking the first time that high-level football was played at this stadium. SIU defeated Southeast Missouri State by a score of 36-19.