Thursday, March 27, 2014

Is this the year for craft beer in Louisville Slugger Field, or will it be another ignominious swill-out?

If you search the internetz for "Louisville Bats Craft Beer," you're pointed here: Promotion Schedule.

Then search for the word "craft" on the same page, and the results show: 0 of 0.

That's par for the course, although there are the usual $1 Budweiser Beer Happy Swill Hour promos throughout the campaign. A couple hours up the road in Cincinnati, home of the Reds -- major league parent club of the Bats -- comes this news:


Louisville Bats craft-oriented fans, read it and weep.

The Bats home season starts in two weeks. Recently, when I've mentioned the impending 2014 yearly reprise of "The Sahara of Slugger Field," I've received tantalizing hints in return, to the effect that the adjacent Against the Grain brewery intends to reverse its traditional disinterest in the perimeters of the ball park lying outside its doors, and will be involved somehow in bringing better beer to the ballpark this year, perhaps in conjunction with other Kentucky breweries. This would make sense, especially if done via the Kentucky Guild of Brewers imprimatur.

I'm told nothing, and I know nothing. It's fairly simple: Since the inception of Slugger Field, the Bats and monopolist catering partner Centerplate have refused to comprehend a vastly altered beer world, and as someone who'd dearly love to spend money at games more often than I do now, a selection of craft beer reflecting the real world we live in would be quite nice.

Ultimately, the dollar-is-king-bottom-line Bats ballclub is relinquishing further windfall profits by not lifting a timid finger to the air and catering to consumer tastes in the year 2014. Maybe they're planning on doing so, and will surprise us all in two weeks. I can only hope. The city of Louisville deserves better than mass-market swill at the yard.

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