Follow us:

Take 2

A different spin on sports by The Seattle Times staff and readers.

July 18, 2013 at 11:00 AM

Baseball fan’s first memory of Sicks’ Stadium never fades

By Tom Likai

Reader Tom Likai, 66, is a Seattle native who, apart from his two years of Army service in California and Vietnam, has never lived anywhere else.  He is a devoted sports fan who is perpetually split by his passion for it and his wonder at the overwhelming importance it is given.

Dad was a former semipro baseball player and a devoted fan of Seattle’s Class AAA farm teams from the mid-1940s on. When I was a little kid, all the talk around the house about the Rainiers got my attention. Even though I knew nothing more than the basics, he talked me into attending a game with him.  I guess I was 8 years old.

Sicks’ Stadium was a venerable old place with more than a few miles on it, and its design would be considered old fashioned today. When a person presented his ticket and entered the gate, he found himself downstairs in the guts of the building. The first thing that hit me was the smell.  It was a combination of the odors of stale beer and old cigars, not unpleasant exactly, just foreign to a child. Soon my dad and I came to a double flight of cement stairs, leading up to I didn’t know what.

As we reached the top and walked down a short aisle to the seating area, I encountered a sight that stopped me in my tracks and made me catch my breath.

It was an unbelievable expanse of pure green, extending into what seemed like forever.  The vibrant color contrasted sharply with the smooth brown of the expertly manicured infield dirt. All around me were excited people, and here and there were the occasional vendors with their assorted treasures for sale (“Get yer red hots!”). All told, this panorama provided me with sensory overload like I had never known.  This memory goes wherever I go.

My father has long since passed on, but the love of the game of baseball lives in me and always will.  That feeling is his legacy and is the single thing I got from him that I value most.

Want to be a reader contributor to The Seattle Times’ Take 2 blog? Email your original, previously unpublished work or proposal to Sports Editor Don Shelton at dshelton@seattletimes.com or sports@seattletimes.com. Not all submissions can be published. The Times reserves the right to edit and publish any submissions online and/or in print.

Comments

COMMENTS

No personal attacks or insults, no hate speech, no profanity. Please keep the conversation civil and help us moderate this thread by reporting any abuse. See our Commenting FAQ.



The opinions expressed in reader comments are those of the author only, and do not reflect the opinions of The Seattle Times.


Advertising
The Seattle Times

The door is closed, but it's not locked.

Take a minute to subscribe and continue to enjoy The Seattle Times for as little as 99 cents a week.

Subscription options ►

Already a subscriber?

We've got good news for you. Unlimited seattletimes.com content access is included with most subscriptions.

Subscriber login ►
The Seattle Times

To keep reading, you need a subscription upgrade.

We hope you have enjoyed your complimentary access. For unlimited seattletimes.com access, please upgrade your digital subscription.

Call customer service at 1.800.542.0820 for assistance with your upgrade or questions about your subscriber status.

The Seattle Times

To keep reading, you need a subscription.

We hope you have enjoyed your complimentary access. Subscribe now for unlimited access!

Subscription options ►

Already a subscriber?

We've got good news for you. Unlimited seattletimes.com content access is included with most subscriptions.

Activate Subscriber Account ►