April 1 marks the return of Major League Baseball to Milwaukee. It is a time when many of the Brew Crew's biggest fans are cheering not only for the blue and gold, but also for the legendary Pfister Ghost.
A number of players from around the National League have claimed to have supernatural experiences while in the hotel.
While the Pfister staff state the luxury hotel is haunted by nothing more than the “spirit of hospitality,” the following players are certain the strange things they experienced during their stay points to the paranormal.
In 2018, St. Louis Cardinals pitcher Carlos Martinez claims he saw a ghost in his hotel room. The apparition shook him up so much, he jumped onto Instagram in the middle of the night to share his paranormal experience. Martinez had a rough game the following day, which he blamed on residual heebie-jeebies from his spooky late-night encounter with a ghost.
Los Angeles Angels first baseman Ji-Man Choi also had a memorable stay at the Pfister. In 2016, he reported that a misty spirit hovered over his bed as he was trying to fall asleep.
Choi is not the only Angel who had a strange experience in the hotel. Pitcher C.J. Wilson recalled a time when he had an electrical disturbance in his room. It began with the lightbulb in a bedside lamp flickering. Within moments, the lamp turned off. A minute later, his television turned off. He sat for a moment, wondering if there was a supernatural entity in the room. Eerily, as soon as the thought crossed his mind, the lamp and the television turned back on, and an overhead light by the doorway of the room shut itself off. Then, he heard a strange scratching sound that seemed to come from inside the wall of his room. The unexplained noises continued through the night, and as the hours ticked by, Wilson grew more convinced something otherworldly was in that room with him.
It seems at least one of the spirits that still linger inside the famous hotel has an ear for music. In 2009, third baseman Pablo Sandoval was taking a shower in his room when his iPod suddenly turned itself on and started to play a song. Reds second baseman Brandon Phillips was relaxing in his room when the radio in the room began to play. He turned the radio off and headed into the shower. While showering, he heard the radio switch on again.
Perhaps the most peculiar story to come from a baseball player who stayed at the hotel is the story relayed by right fielder Bryce Harper. He was playing for the Washington Nationals while staying at the hotel. Before he went to bed, he placed his clothes for the next day on the bench that was at the foot of his bed. When he woke up the next morning, his clothes were on the floor, and the bench had been moved to the other side of the room. No one else was in his room that night, and there was no explanation for how the heavy bench moved soundless across the room without human intervention. The experience unnerved him so much that he packed his belongings and went to hotel’s front desk to request a new room – and one on a different floor!
So many players have had spooky experiences at the Pfister, some pros refuse to stay at the hotel. Others will stay at the hotel, but only if they share a room with another player. At least one player has admitted that, when he stays at the Pfister, he sleeps with a bat in his bed for protection.
There are few teams in the National League who have not had at least one player claim to have a paranormal experience in the hotel. Except, of course, the Milwaukee Brewers. It seems as if the Pfister ghost is always rooting for the home team. Brewers who stay at the hotel for home games are said to have peaceful and very uneventful nights. Teams in town to play against the home team? Well, they don’t sleep quite as soundly.
These eerie events have often been attributed to the spirit of Charles Pfister. In Pfister’s day, it was very common to harass traveling teams in support of the home team. Fans would knock on the hotel windows and doors of opposing players and play other pranks in an effort to ensure the team had anything but a restful night. When the blurry-eyed, sleep-deprived players showed up for the game, fans felt they did their part to support the home team. Some believe Charles Pfister carries on this tradition in the afterlife.
As players step up to the plate to begin another season, all eyes will be on the Pfister Ghost. Which player will be added to this list in the 2021 season? Smart money says it definitely won’t be a Milwaukee Brewer!