The Legend of Milt Famous
I write fiction. Baseball season is nearing its end. Milwaukee may or may not continue, I remembered a story I heard about them years ago. I decided to take some liberties about that with this story.
One day a few years ago, my friend Brad invited me to an afternoon baseball game. His favorite team, Milwaukee Brewers, was playing my favorite team, St. Louis Cardinals. He had seats 6 rows above the Brewers’ dug-out. He was paying and driving. How could I refuse?
His favorite player, Milt Famous, was most likely not going to play that day. But Brad thought he might be able to at least catch a glimpse of him. Milt Famous was famous. Everyone in the stadium knew of Milt Famous.
Milt Famous was the legendary starting pitcher for the Milwaukee Brewers. His entire career had been with this team and he pitched for them for over a decade. No other pitcher in Brewer history could match his record. He set a new bar not only for the Brewers but for all pitchers in baseball.
That year, though, he had fallen on hard times. Perhaps because of his notoriety, his hard times were very public. Famous enjoyed his Schlitz Beer, “The Beer That Made Milwaukee Famous”. That year he had a very public overindulgence problem. Many thought he shared that overindulgence on the field. His pitching performance suffered. Although still on the roster for the Brewers, he had been relegated to the bull pen and seldom used.
Adding to his poor baseball performance, he would be seen having confrontation with fellow players and coaches in the dug-out. His wife recently divorced him. The fact that his children weren’t expressing much interest in being with him became public knowledge. His home and other personal items were up for sale.
No one knows for sure why Milt fell on hard times. He only reveled in his good times.
But, I digress. I was at the game with my buddy, Brad. We expected an exciting game. Both teams were having a good season. Both teams had decent pitchers but excelled at hitting. This particular game their best pitchers were not pitching, so we expected lots of offense.
We were not disappointed. By the bottom of the 9th inning the score was tied 10 to 10. It was a home game, so the Cardinals were batting. With two outs and bases loaded, the Brewers were forced to bring in another relief pitcher. The situation looked good for the Cardinals but very bleak for the Brewers. Only one pitcher was available for the Brewers, Milt Famous.
My buddy would be able to see his favorite Brewer play after all. I had mixed feelings, though, for what my buddy was about to see. Both of us had already seen Famous have heated words with his fellow players and his coaches. This couldn’t be a good situation, but the Brewers had no other options.
It appeared Milt Famous stumbled to the mound. Four pitches later, the game was over. Famous had walked in the winning run.
I remember the interview of the Cardinal coach. When asked what he attributed his win to he responded, “It was the beer that made Milt Famous walk us.”