Outside of a memorable 2018 campaign, the Milwaukee Brewers have at times been scary bad. They were one of those teams that when on your favorite team’s schedule, it was a relief. So, why do teams hate traveling to Wisconsin to take on the Brewers? Well, on numerous occasions MLB players have reported “paranormal activity” when staying at the Pfister Hotel in Milwaukee. Let’s take a dive into some of the ghost stories that have emerged from players staying at the haunted hotel.
Bryce Harper, OF, Washington Nationals
The man who may break records in his next contract had to first survive the horrors the hotel presented before launching into stardom.
“I had a pair of jeans and a shirt on that table at the foot of the bed. When I woke up in the morning — I swear on everything — the clothes were on the floor and the table was on the opposite side of the room.”
After Harper’s ordeal, he proceeded to go down to the front desk and get a different room on a different floor.
Michael Young, IF, Texas Rangers
The seven-time All-Star, who doesn’t really get into the whole ghost business, had this to say after his stay at the Pfister.
“Listen, I’m not someone who spreads ghost stories, so if I’m telling you this, it happened. A couple of years ago, I was lying in bed after a night game, and I was out. My room was locked, but I heard these footsteps inside my room, stomping around. I’d heard all these stories about this hotel, so I was wide awake at that point. And then I heard it again, these footsteps on the floor, so I yelled out, “Hey, make yourself at home. Hang out, have a seat, but do not wake me up, OK?” After that, I didn’t hear a thing for the rest of the night.”
C.J. Wilson, Pitcher, Los Angeles Angels
The ghosts in Pfister made a believer out of the once prized free-agent pitcher.
“I’ve had lots of experiences there. I was on the computer one night, doing my typical shtick — surfing the web, sending an email, editing a photo — and then all of a sudden the lights started flickering. I’m thinking to myself, I’m going to be so pissed if my computer dies. Then the light just shuts off. And then the TV shuts off. And then the light turns back on, but the light at the front door turns off.”
The ghosts weren’t quite done with Wilson quite yet.
“… then 30 minutes later, there’s scratching in the walls.”
Besides a ghost, Wilson thought a possum might be the culprit of the sounds from within the walls. However, as the night wore on, the ghouls of Pfister made sure Wilson wouldn’t mistake a ghost for a possum again.
“I’m literally looking to see if there are people in the hallway, if someone’s trying to pull something. But then the lights really start going crazy, and I’m like, are you kidding me? I don’t want anything from you. Leave me alone. Or write it down. Write down what you want. I can’t communicate through the lights.”
Brandon Philips, 2B, Cincinnati Reds
The second baseman known for his splashy plays up the middle had a brief, yet memorable experience in the hotel.
“We play Milwaukee a lot, but I remember one time I came into the room and just sat on the bed. Then, for some reason, the damn radio turned on. So I turned it off and got in the shower. When I was done, that motherf—er had turned back on.”
Pablo Sandoval, 3B, San Francisco Giants
The “Kung Fu Panda” had a similar experience to Philips. The main difference is Sandoval didn’t think he could survive a night in the Pfister.
“I don’t like the ghosts there. In 2009, I went to take a shower, and I remember putting my iPod next to a speaker. When I came out, it was playing music, and I have no idea why. I left the hotel after that. I didn’t want to stay there. In 2010, me and Edgar (Renteria) stayed down the street and paid for it on our own.”
The reasoning behind these hauntings remains a mystery. Is it the fact that the hotel is well over 100 years old? Could Charles Pfister, the hotel’s founder, haunt the establishment himself? Whatever it may be, the ghost stories have made at least one thing clear. That professional athletes in peak physical condition and that look superhuman sometimes are afraid of what goes bump-bump in the night. The stories also offer a bit of helpful advice. The next time you book a trip to Milwaukee, think twice before staying at the Pfister Hotel.