St. Louis Cardinals

Cardinals’ Winter Warm-Up returns for its 20th year

An avalanche of red will brighten a gray-skied weekend as the St. Louis Cardinals lather up their fans for the upcoming season with the 20th annual Winter Warm-Up.

Again this year, the wildly popular three-day event will be held at Hyatt Regency St. Louis at The Arch, located a hop, skip and a jump from Busch Stadium at 315 Chestnut St.

Yadier Molina, Adam Wainwright, Matt Holliday, Matt Carpenter, Michael Wacha, Trevor Rosenthal, Stephen Piscotty, Randal Grichuk, Jhonny Peralta and Kolten Wong will be among the current Cardinals to attend and sign autographs.

About 70 current and former Cardinals will be in attendance.

Here’s what you need to know if you plan on visiting the Warm-Up:

Q: What are the hours for the event?

A: The Warm-Up will be held on the second and fourth floors of the hotel from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday and Sunday and from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Monday.

Q: Do I need a pass to be admitted?

A: Yes, and they must be displayed to enter. If you don’t have one, they can be purchased at the Cardinals Team Store at Busch Stadium, which is open every day from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., and all Cardinals Clubhouse Stories, including one at St. Clair Square in Fairview Heights. Passes also are available on Level 2 of the hotel at the autograph and admission sales table.

Q: How much are the passes?

A: Weekend passes are $40 for fans 16 and over, $10 for kids 5 to 15 and free for children under 5.

Q: How can I get an autograph from my favorite player?

A: Autograph tickets must be purchased. Because of demand, some autograph tickets already are sold out for popular Cardinals like Carpenter, Grichuk, Holliday and Molina and others.

But other autograph tickets, reasonably priced, remained as of Friday for players like Wong ($50), Rosenthal ($45), Peralta ($35), Matt Adams ($25), Marco Gonzales ($15), Mike Leake ($40), Lance Lynn ($20), Kevin Siegrist ($15), Seth Maness ($10) and Tyler Lyons ($5).

Autograph tickets also remained Friday for manager Mike Matheny ($40) and former managers Whitey Herzog ($75) and Tony La Russa ($75).

Many autographs are free.

All autograph sessions will be on Level 4. For a complete schedule, visit cardinals.com.

Money donated for autographs benefits Cardinals Care, the team’s charitable foundation. Cardinals Care has distributed over $21 million to support regional non-profit organizations, and has funded the construction of 22 baseball fields in under-resourced areas.

Q: What if I’m not into autographs?

A: There are other things to do. For example, Cardinals General Manager John Mozeliak will participate in a two-hour question-and-answer session with fans from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday on the main stage.

There also will be “dugout presentations” and “clubhouse presentations.” There are two interesting clubhouse presentations Sunday. At 11 a.m., fans can hear Assistant General Manager Michael Girsch and Scouting Director Randy Flores talk about the amatuer draft. At 1 p.m., Director of Player Development Gary LaRocque will talk to fans.

In one of the dugout presentations, at 3 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, Dave Jackson will discuss all aspects of sports collecting, to include the various types, values and appraisals.

Two silent and live auctions will be held each day, as will 50/50 raffles for fans ages 18 and over. An abundance of interactive games will be available for younger fans.

Q: Can I bring food inside the hotel?

A: No, but food will be served inside. Pizza slices, hamburgers, cheeseburgers, hot dogs, ham and cheese sandwiches, chicken sandwiches and roasted vegetable sandwiches are priced between $4 and $6. Potato chips, cookies, fruit, candy and bottled water also will be available.

Q: What about parking?

A: Plenty of parking is located within walking distance of the hotel. Stadium garages west and east are available, as are spaces at Ballpark Village. Free street parking could be found Sunday and Monday, which is Martin Luther King Jr. Day.

Q: Can I follow the Warm-Up on social media?

A: Yes. Use #CardsWarmUp on Twitter to see what people are saying about the event or to post your own thoughts or photos, and follow the Cardinals on Twitter at @Cardinals. On Facebook, connect at Facebook.com/Cardinals.

David Wilhelm: 618-239-2665, @DavidMWilhelm

  Comments