JUPITER, Fla. -- The Hall of Famer comes every day, casually walking through the Cardinals' spring training clubhouse with a smile or a wave or a kind word. Though they earnestly refer to him as a legend, most, if not all, of St. Louis' players never saw the man steal so much as a single base. Heck, these guys are so young that they don't even remember the Tribe Called Quest song
No, Lou Brock is here because he's Lou Brock.
This is a wonderful thing.
On a day most reporters were assigned the grimy task of stalking
"I love this more than anything," he says, smiling. "First, it's cold back home in St. Louis, and I can do without that. But mostly, I love what this all means to me. The sound of a ball hitting a glove --
If one needed a reminder of Brock's continued value to the St. Louis organization, he didn't have to look far. Throughout much of the exhibition game, Brock stood alongside
With Brock, you know. He'll talk about anything -- absolutely anything -- as long as it pertains to baseball.
Why aren't teams running like they used to?
"Ballparks are way too small," he says. "Built for power."
Who's the best base-stealer of all time?
Can you believe it's been 30 years?
"When you live a full life," he says, "time doesn't matter."
Indeed, when spring ends come April 2, he will return to St. Louis to focus on his two businesses, an online fundraising operation and a ministry he runs with his wife,
And yet ...
"I'm always happy," he says, "but I'm really happy during spring."