Day 138: August 24, 1991

Helena, MT

Park # 151

What I Remember

The Helena Brewers are a part of my thesis about professional baseball. The Brewers had only been affiliated with Montana’s capital city for six years when we arrived on an August Saturday, but already players like Gary Sheffield, Greg Vaughn and Jaime Navarro had established a connection with Milwaukee. Those players had played right down the street and when we were there, they were all playing in Milwaukee, just a few seasons later.

But the Brewers kept going back to this beautiful city in the northern Rockies every summer for another decade and then, after a three-year hiatus – returned from 2003-2018. A generation of Brewers fans have rooted for players that almost all began their careers in Helena and a generation of Helena fans have almost certainly cheered for Milwaukee as much or more than more nearby Seattle or Denver.

But now, the Pioneer League is gone. The Brewers have only four minor league affiliates. None of them are any closer to Helena than Milwaukee itself and none of them have a history with the Brewers that rivals that of Helena. As that generation of Brewers fans in Montana ages, it will not be replaced. Nor will the generation of Reds fans in Billings. Chances are, the kids that might have become fans of the Helena Brewers or the Billings Mustangs will not be major league baseball fans at all.

The Games

Helena Brewers 5 Billings Mustangs 3

The Box

A Note about this Site

This site is intended to be a companion to the upcoming book In League with America. Although some games were particularly notable and will appear in the book, most of the results of the 199 games we saw over the course of the 1991 season will not. Our journey was never really intended to be at the games themselves, it was about the places we saw and the people we met along the way.

However, there is now an historic nature to the results from this season. All of the players we saw then, even in the minors, have long since retired. Some of the players we saw at Class A are now members of the Baseball Hall of Fame. These pages, then, will function as kind of a digital appendix with a brief recollection of each day, the result of the game(s) we saw that day and a map of our daily drive.

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