Yesterday, Bill Murray showed up at a minor league baseball game and was standing at the gates checking people’s tickets. Turns out, he was the part owner of the home team, the St. Paul Saints, but it still doesn’t make Bill Murray any less cool, because he’s Bill Murray.
Inspired by this, I wrote a thing at Rolling Stone about other sports owners who did crazy, cool, and petty things. I never knew about the Charlie Finley story which is included in the piece until I researched for this. He’s definitely on my all-time #petty list now.
You can read the entire piece here. An excerpt is below.
Bill Murray, Again Beside the St. Paul Saints, Murray is also a part owner of several other minor league baseball teams, including the Charleston RiverDogs, a Single-A affiliate with the New York Yankees. During his time as part owner, the RiverDogs have held two very innovative promotions for its fans.
The first one was "Silent Night" in 2003, when fans were asked to keep quiet during the whole game so the team could set the record for quietest game in baseball history. The team even replaced ushers with librarians.
This was only slightly less crazy than a promotion the team had the year before, when it held "Nobody Night". The team didn’t let any fans into the game until it became official in the fifth inning, so it could set the record this time for lowest attendance in an official baseball game.
The fans were rewarded for showing up though, as the team had discounted food and beer outside in the parking lot while they waited, begging the question: Why is Bill Murray not the commissioner of all things sports?