Saturday, November 16, 2013

Getting A Raise

Well we knew ticket prices were sure to go up for 2014, but there will also be tiered pricing at Fenway for the first time. I like seeing "$10" in that article. Interestingly, they say that will be the price for shittier games in "upper standing room," implying that's the cheapest ticket. But ever since they added that upper SRO, it's cost more than regular SRO. So I wonder if they're also restructuring the whole park. Because there's no way those left field upper seats under the Coke sign should cost $75 while other lower and closer seats cost less. And I've always wondered why bleachers are cheaper than the right field grandstand seats which don't face the field. (Maybe the aspect of "cover" is that important to most people.) If I were them, I'd make the bleacher seats more expensive early and late in the year, since you're not baking out there then. And then the covered seats could cost more on in the sweltering months. We'll see how they do it, they say time of year, team, all that stuff is considered. They also note that every team is now officially doing this, which kinda makes sense in a world where 99% of people think the secondary market is where tickets derive from.

I went to look at the exact pricing, and I got a funny error page.... (reload for the different funnies)

Friday, November 15, 2013

I Heart This Picture

While walking around "backstage" at Fenway the other night, I actually missed this in the Red Sox clubhouse. Fortunately my friend Kyle didn't. Pic courtesy of him. More on this night later. Like I said before and whatnot.

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

New Red Sox Book

Allan Wood, author of The Joy of Sox blog, has a book coming out in April called Don't Let Us Win Tonight. It's an Orel Hersh-tory of the 2004 Red Sox. Should be fun.

Pre-order now!

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Where I Was Tonight

More on this later....

Monday, November 11, 2013

Retro Gallery: Angels At Red Sox, 7/20/1985

Found these in a photo album at my mom's place last weekend. It was pretty easy to figure out the game, as we've got pics of the Angels defense up on the scoreboard. Turns out it was Saturday, July 20th, 1985 (box & play-by-play).

A packed house (right from the start) on a sunny day in Boston. I'm not sure what the story was here--my mom was always the photographer so I assume she was shooting. But did we really have seats this good? I don't think so. I'd guess she went down close, as hard as that might have been with every seat filled. She probably just went to the aisle down close for these good shots. Maybe she could fill us in on some of her memories. Above it's the Red Sox about to hit in the bottom of the first, as evidenced by the defense up on the board, and our first two hitters, Dwight Evans and Wade Boggs, getting ready to go. That's Rod Carew at first for California, in what would be his 67th-to-last major league game out of about 2,500. The starters were Mike Witt, on his 25th birthday, and Bobby Ojeda, who would get knocked out early.

Mom goes down closer for a shot of the Chicken Shit-- er, Man, after Dewey has walked up to the plate. Evans would walk, and Boggs would ground into a double play. Notice how only numbers 9 and 4 have been retired at this point.

Top 3 now, and the Angels are up 4-zip. Reggie Jackson pinch-hits and would draw a bases-loaded walk off of Mike Trujillo. The RBI, his 1,562nd, tied him with Tris Speaker for 19th on the all-time list. Oddly, Jackson was pinch-hitting for Rufino Linares (funny tale about him at bottom of this article), who homered in the second. From what I gather from contemporary game stories via Google News, Gene Mauch was resting his old guys by starting rookies in day games after night games, and then apparently putting the fogies in once they were fully awake. Mauch would win his 1,700th game that day. Also note the long-gone "Lite" and "WPLM" signs to the left of CITGO. And Gedman behind the dish. And Brian Downing on third with his helmet off.

I must kill...the queen. Reggie is up again, and he'll soon ground into a double play.

We go to the bottom of the 6th with the Sox still down 5-0. Again we have the top of the order leading off an inning, as Evans and Boggs prepare to hack. Atop the bleachers, the ad board on the right has flipped from Thom McAn to...something else. Anybody?

Evans would reach on Ducky Schofield's son's error, and then Boggs, above, laces a double. At least I think this is the double. It's definitely the right at bat according to the scoreboard, but if we're assuming the ball (which you can see) is going to go to the left of the third baseman, then it's fair to say it could be going foul and he doubles later in the at bat. But I'd say this is the double. Evans would go to third and score on a Bill Buckner groundout. 5-1 Angels through 6.

The Red Sox would cut it to 5-3 in the bottom of the ninth on ribbies by the Hit Man and the Ged Man (I have game-used jerseys of both guys, oddly or normally enough), but the first-place Halos would hang on for the victory. California found themselves in a canine quarrel with Kansas City and lose the AL West in the final few days of the season. The Red Sox ended up 81-81, nowhere near the front-running Blue Jays. Jere would go on to post pictures of this game 28+ years later on something called the "Internet," using the take-a-picture-of-a-picture method over the so-called "scanner" technology, which is sitting right next to him collecting dust. He feels the other way is easier.

Arrible Job

You know how I hate it when people forget to include the first and last year of a group of seasons. It's a much-repeated mistake: [Team Q won its Gth title in the last R years], where [R = the actual amount of years minus 1]. Sometimes the incorrect stat can gain so much momentum, it becomes the accepted one. Google giants second super bowl "last five years", and you'll find about 100 million results, to only 19 million for giants second super bowl "last four years", which is the one that's actually correct.

When the Red Sox won their third title in TEN years, not nine, even though subtracting 2004 from 2013 indeed yields nine (just count on your fingers, you'll see where the ten comes from), I listened for "the mistake." In Fox and NESN's postgame coverage, everybody got it right. Except, fittingly, for Don Orsillo, who threw out a "3 in 9" during an interview.

The other day, instead of doing something that helps the world*, I sat here checking for online instances of 3-in-9 action. I found this one. So now that I've called this kid out on what was probably just an honest mistake, let me get to the real issue:

So he writes this article about the younger Sox fans seeing all the winning and the difference between that and what the older ones have been through. Fine. But look at this line I'm about to paste on your face, and keep in mind this guy claims to be 24 years old:

I endured countless sub-.500 seasons

Whoa, ging-ga. Let's go to over to retrosheet, or the tops of our heads, and see how many times the Red Sox have finished under .500 since August 1989, when this guy was born.

You've got 1992 through 1994 (that's three seasons as much as it would appear to be two), and then 1997. Plus 2012, of course. So since he was born, there have been five sub-.500 seasons for the Red Sox. One of those was an unfinished strike season, and in another we were only one win shy of being exactly .500, but hey, we'll still count those. What I don't think we should count is the '92-'94 span, since the guy was five years old at the end of it--can we really say he "endured" those seasons?

Basically he has had to endure two sub-.500 seasons. Let's go back and look at his line one more time:

I endured countless sub-.500 seasons

Apparently this man is unable to count to two. Even Frosty the goddamn Snowman could count to five!

Anyway, I'm not actually mad at the guy, it's just funny.

Let me tell you who I am mad at, though. The guy who wrote a piece for the NYT in which he stole my "the B on our hats was Kryptonite to Yankee fans in NYC in 2005" line. And then went on to say how Yankee fans are quiet these days what with us having won again and there being so many Sox fans in NYC...and how he liked it better the old way! Jesus, another one of these bullshit "winning was the worst thing for us" articles that Michael Kay used to draft up as a defense mechanism in case we ever won.

It's interesting, though. Both that article and the one by Mr. I Can Count To One confirm that we live in a society that only seems to remember the most recent thing. After 2011 and 2012, there was so much talk of the Red Sox as annual chokers and losers, you would have thought neither 2004 nor 2007 actually happened. And now we're right back to "god, we're so spoiled with these trophies just falling out our butt holes with every step we take across the field of goldenrod we currently reside in." After last season, who would have thought we'd so quickly see another "I liked it so much better when we were losing" spiel?

The douche in question ends his article with

Perhaps it’s folly to say, but a part of me misses the old days.

You can take out the "perhaps," stoolbend. If you want the Red Sox to lose and the Yankees to win, and you're having trouble cherishing every goddamn second of being able to walk around NYC with a Sox hat on and not have Yankee fans giving you shit because we're the World Champions, you are welcome to go ahead and become a Yankee fan. IS this mofo trying to tell me that he got no shit after 2011? 2012? He says how "we just win," again forgetting that in the year before this one, and the year before that one, we didn't win.

So which is it these days? Are the Red Sox a winner or a loser, or does it depend on the previous day's result? I'll give you the answer. The Red Sox...are a sometimes winner, sometimes loser. And that, compared to being a loser, for decades and decades, is a beautiful thing. Because no team is going to win every single year. You can't expect that. You can root for it. But in the end you should be happy every time you get to see your team raise a banner. If you're still wearing the same shoes you had on the previous time they won, even better. Another thing Kay used to say was that if the Red Sox ever won, they'd be "just another team." He seemed to think that we'd trade "actually winning a World Series for the first time in our lives" for "being special." But we really did get the last laugh here. Because we're now just another team, one that wins on occasion. And we're special.

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Location: Rhode Island, United States