Saturday, October 07, 2006

The Devil Is Six

This one feels particularly sweet.

Because of Johnny Damon, and the way he was compared, inexplicably, to Ruth, Clemens, and Boggs. Another Red Sox loser who went to New York to win. Ha! He won with us, remember? He won with us, he went to them to LOSE.

Because of the way Yankee fans completely forgot which team is currently cursed--ha! again--and rubbed it (what?) in our faces this year, as if they somehow knew they'd go right back to winning World Series'.

Because of A-Rod. Did he really just completely choke in the playoffs again? Yes, he did. If he were any other person, in any other line of work, I'd feel horrible for him. But he sold his soul (welcome to his world, Johnny!), and the world is watching as the devil of baseball laughs in his face.

Because of Derek Jeter. Every year he's thought of as the guy who you want on your team, because he's a "winner." It's been awhile, though, for Derek. And guess what? He can have the MVP! It's not a ring.

And, of course, because of Big Stein himself. Keep spending, George. Might want to think about putting some of that dough into pitchers, though. I don't know, though. I'm just some guy. I mean, I could be way off on that. Just my advice. You don't have to take it. You're the businessman. (My dad pointed out that they've spent over a billion dollars since they last won.)

You know, I got a little worried when the playoffs started. I knew the Yanks had major flaws. But all the other teams looked beatable. So, great job by the Tigers, for doing what they showed they could do earlier in the season. Now I get to sleep peacefully for six months.

And great job by the Tigers for coming out on the field and celebrating with the fans. I liked wheh that random dude wanted a kiss from Leyland through the screen, and Leyland kissed his hat. Also, Kid Rock was in my dream last night. So it was fitting that Bonderman, who I've siad before reminds me, facially, of Kid Rock, got the huge win, and that Kid Rock was mentioned several times during the telecast. God, I hate Kid Rock. So scary. But I liked watching Kid Bonderman today.

Next year at this time, we'll be watching the Red Sox celebrate like that.

Edit: Here's a bonus video. I should also note the terrible job by the gutless media, as they all picked the Yanks to win this series easily!

Edit: I grabbed the Sterling audio and threw it on the same video. I like how he also noticed "the kiss":

Moonion Square

I got to Union Square a little too late for the anti-Bush protest on Thursday. They had a big stage set up and everything. I'd read there was to be an afternoon march from the UN to Union Square, followed by a rally at "nightfall." I was there before nightfall, but it was over. However, I did get this cool shot of our moon, Moon, rising in the east. The one below shows some diehards still holding signs after most people had gone home.


No player is more valuable to his team than Abert Pujols, Joe Morgan just said.

He followed it up with: But you could also say the same thing about Ryan Howard.

RIP Buck O'Neil

Buck O'Neil, one of life's Hall of Famers, died yesterday. (AP Photo)

Friday, October 06, 2006


It's over. Two games to one. Good side. This calls for a Jimmy Smits video. Ladies and gentleman, the third and final Smits PSA. This one has a special twist:

Morgan and Miller were making excuses for everything that went against the Yanks tonight. Terrible job, guys. Oh well. I got the result I wanted.

To Town

Kenny Rogers is so psyched right now. He was ready to spike the ball. 5-0 Tigers in the seventh. I'm right there with ya, Kenny. (Wow, I never thought I'd say that...)

I think one of the most awkward moments in a broadcast is when the crowd is chanting a player's name, and the announcer attempts to describe it. Because you know they've got to make a decision. Should they say the name being chanted once? Or twice, to clarify it's being said repeatedly? And should they just say the name? Or sing it? Or say it, but break it up into two syllables?

It always ends up sounding stupid. We always know exactly what they mean, but there's just no good way to convey it.

"The crowd here at Shitsburg Stadium chanting 'Chan-stein.'"

6-0 now on a HR. Randy is out. The Tigers are looking good. Better than Joe Morgan, who is repeatedly making himself look like a fool. Just too many ways to describe. Anyway, if Detroit can hang on tonight, that means the Yanks are in a must-win situation with Jaret Wright on the mound.

Come on, Tigers!!!!!!!

My 2006 Walkoffs

Loretta homers to win it on Patriots' Day, the day I went to two MLB games in two different cities.

Papi's homer beats Phils in the Brett Myers post-assault game, June 24th.

Big Papi strikes again vs. Angels, July 29th, as I film, in my first game in the Pavilion seats.

Hometown hero Carlos Pena with a no-doubter to send us working-types home happy on Labor Day.

I was lucky enough to have witnessed four walkoffs in one season. (The team had eight in 2006. Here's the all-time list.) Some of my others, off the top of my head, include O-Cab's HR the day he flew back from Colombia in September '04, (got one of my four major league baseballs at that game--all four were in batting practice; still waiting for that first real game ball), Manny's single in the 14th against Houston in '03, (Got another of the four balls that day. Wow, I never realized that before: the two balls I got at Fenway were both on days where the Sox would get a walk-off win.), Carl Everett's home run in '00 (I somehow dragged Chan up to Boston for that one, and I have a pic of Everett crossing the plate, from the pre-digital days), Todd Pratt beating us in Philly in '03 with a homer off of Seanez I, the Mel Hall game in 1991, which, fortunately, we left early, and the day at Yankee Stadium in 1987 when pre-roids Clemens (yeah, I said it) blew a 9-0 lead.

Thursday, October 05, 2006

Thank Jesus

Damon ends the game as the potential winning run. Great job, Tigers. Go home, pretend you're the first-half Tigers, and shut the damn door on these 'holes.


Tigers hit three balls deep (according to the little map), but all for outs in the eighth. Cling to a 4-3 lead. Yanks go down 1-2-ARod in the bottom half. Please, Tigers, hold on with thoust claws so fra-zhee-lay.

So Far

Okay, we've got Dick Leyland doing his NL crap some more today, with the bunting in a non-bunt situation. Fortunately, the Tigers are surely going against his wishes to be all intricate and just rocking home runs off Mussina. Two dongs have made it 3-3, after Johnny "There is no worse person in the world than me" Damon homered to make it 3-1.

Leyland: Let 'em hit! You think too hard, you lose. This is the playoffs, Tigers. No mistakes.

3-3 in the sixth.

The Arrogance Of The Yankee Fan

From the Daily News:

"Is this ESPN related or rain related?" asked Jeremy Schein, a 26-year-old Manhattanite who works in finance. "The ultimate question is if the network or MLB made the call. You know how hard it is for us to leave work and come here and then hear that it's 1 p.m. (today)?"

Yes, sir, fans of every other team know what it's like to sometimes be inconvenienced, usually at the hands of your team. Their teams don't get scheduled in prime time for every single game.

I picture this guy being interviewed through the window of his solid gold car. What, you can't get a day off? "Finance, Incorporated" doesn't let you just phone it in from South Hadley whenever you want to? Come on.

F the Yanks.

Beverly Hill Billy Rohr Of The Thai Girl

Thank you, Sam. Perfect.

Wednesday, October 04, 2006



3.29 ERA. That's better, by 68 points,than any Red Sox pitcher on the entire staff who pitched 40 or more innings, except for Papelbon. Add a full run onto his ERA, if you want to account for the NL/AL difference, and he still beats everybody, except for Schilling.

His 240.2 innings pitched were the most in the majors. This was one of my big arguments when the trade was made. He's a guy that can give you a lot of innings. That's exactly what we needed with an aging, injury-prone staff. The fact that he could do this, while being happy to do it in any role and wanting to play in Boston more than anywhere, would've been a huge bonus. This, I feel, is way more valuable than what Wily Mo gave us in right field.

His WHIP was better than any of our starters. As many complete games and shutouts as our entire staff (that includes Hansack's 5-inning, complete game shutout).

I still say this guy can be a star. This season, he was considered a Cy Young candidate, until the last few weeks. But he'll still finish high in the voting. We will see what happens in the next few years with the guy.

Even I didn't think he'd have a better year than Beckett. But not only did he do that, he had a better year than Josh did in his last two seasons in the NL.

Wily Mo:

Okay, he got injured. And he was there to fill in, admirably, for the most part, while other players were injured. I never felt he was comfortable in right field. Center field looked more like his position. But we didn't get him for defense.

We were told of his mega-home runs, and we saw a few. When he gets a hold of a ball, it's amazing. Has to be one of the hardest hitters ever. But he only had 11 HR, and his HR rate dropped for the second year in a row. His slugging also went down for the second straight season, though it was third highest on the team. (But still nowhere near Papi/Manny levels.)

We were told the now fired Papa Jack would teach him patience and discipline and whatnot. His average did go way up. His OBP went up, too. Both were his highest ever. But still, .349 OBP, that's 24 points lower than Trot Nixon's. And, by comparison to a really awesome dude that he's supposed to become, 90 points lower than Manny's. He was third on the team in SLG and fourth in OPS.

Two years ago, the year he had the most ABs of his career, Pena struck out at a lower rate than he did this season. He had the twelfth most at bats on the team, and the fourth most strikeouts.

He improved a little in the walk department, but 1 every 13.8 AB isn't so good.

I thought he was inconsistent at the plate. Streaky, I guess. Extended slumps came at bad times, like against the Yanks, who he didn't fare well against. I divided his season into four parts. Look at how he batted in each part:

4/4-4/28: .256 (39 AB)
4/29-7/31: .368 (87 AB)
8/1-9/8: .250 (96 AB)
9/9-9/30: .320 (50 AB)

It all averaged out to about .300, which is good. But it's like he falls asleep for big chunks of time. Hopefully he starts evening everything out and he improves overall instead of going downhill.

People think we gave up on 2006 when we got rid of Wells. I think we gave up when we traded Arroyo. Which doesn't mean I don't know why they did it. I am glad to belooking toward the future. I just thought keeping Bronson would've kept us in it, to the point where we would've had to keep trying, in this particular season.

This is the downside to our team being in a "win now" city. Had we gone all out, and admittedly given up on this year from the start, we'd be in much better shape right now. Maybe we'd still have Marte, Mota, Sanchez, Ramirez, Meredith, etc, etc.

The key, though, with this debate, is next year and beyond. I am hoping that you Wily Mo people win the championship in every year from '07 on.

Usual Travesties. And Smits!

ESPN people are almost consistently referring to tonight's or last night's Tigers-Yanks game as "the Yankee game." It's embarrassing. There are two teams in this series.

And then they tell us that MLB is in control of whether they bring the tarp out before the game, or risk starting the game, and having to stop it right away. Then they tell us that the fact that Mussina being old "has to be" factoring in to their decision. Okay, so it's been established which team they're rooting for. In the "Yankee game."

I love how Joe Buck, last night, said that we might be thinking, "Yeah, the Yankees should be in the playoffs with that huge payroll," but that we need to remember that they had injuries, and Melky Cabrera this, and Melky Cabrera that, and Melky Melky Melky, and Kevin Thompsony Thompson...and then they show how every Yankee in the lineup has been an All-Star at least once.

Okay, it's Smits time. Volume 2 of the 3-tonged series. I like the poster behind him: "A Computer Could Never Replace Me." I bet the kid whose room that was literally got replaced at some job by a computer at some point in his life. Click below.

An enchi-LADA!


ESPN just interviewed Willie "off the first" Randolph* during the game. That made me realize I may be hearing Grady Little's voice very soon, for the first time in a while. Talk about blast from the not-too-distant but feels like a lifetime ago past.

I was thinking how Grady winning a pennant or championship would be good for my camp. My one-person camp. That's right, in case you forgot, or never knew, or are so mad at me you erased it from your memory, I'm the person who feels Grady didn't leave Pedro in too long. At the time, I said, "Go with Pedro." And I stick by it. Matsui hit a good pitch, and Posada had the Jeter-est of bloop doubles. I still think had he removed Pedro, and we still lost, people would've been pissed at him for taking out the ace, and it would've immediately snowballed so that every single Sox fan (except the bizarro me, somewhere in that alternate reality) would've hated the guy anyway. So, him winning would be okay, the guy deserves to get glory rained on him for a change. And I was never a fan of him per se, just kind of indifferent. So, I guess I'll be okay with either team winning this Blue Sox-Mets series.

So, did anyone see what Jeter did last night? (Besides going too far out of the on deck circle to the point where the ump yelled at him.) The Most Popular Player was on second when a ball was hit into the gap. He would score easily. Instead of doing the "classy" thing of simply rounding the bases, Derek decided to trot down the line toward home while clapping excitedly. Right past the opposing catcher, clapping in his face, during the play, on the basepaths. If I was that catcher I would've clotheslined that little jerk.

This is the fucking type of fucking thing that if any other fucking player had fucking done it, they would've cut to a shot of fucking Jeter in the dugout and talked about how a classy fucking player like Jeter would NEVER disrespect the game like that. You do your fucking job and fucking celebrate when it's done, they'd say. And if Manny Ramirez was "rubbing it in to the opponent" like that, the entire rest of the fucking series would be the a Slam Manny Fest. Jeter is and has always has been bush league, and I've watched a majority of his games. Fundamentally sound? Yes. Actually kidnaps babies that we know of? No. But bush league all the way. Other examples can be found throughout this blog. I liked how his 5 for 5 made A-Rod look bad, though. Nice job, Derek!

*80s baseball blooper fans should appreciate that nickname

Stern Depot/Stirrin' Da Pot

It's official. Red Sox lose Adam Stern, in exchange for that brief period of shitty Javy Lopez. We'll get another Oriole or cash as well. Terrible job, Red Sox. Terrible job.

2nd To Last

Dustin Pedroia before the game. This is Saturday, September 30th, 2006. Sox vs. Orioles.

Manny jimmy taps Millar. Warning: lots of Millar to follow.

Trot talks into an odd microphone.

Wakefield shops for his sunflower seeds at Costco.

Everybody loves Melvin Mora.

Millar and Ortiz do an old handshake.

Manny with Predator's hairstyle.

You can see Millar's hand pulling Manny toward him.

Manny seemingly looking at me, but totally not.

Papi and Daniel Cabrera.

Okay, at this point Millar started telling Papi some story.

Papi kept cracking up and trying to turn away because he couldn't take any more. But Kevin kept making him listen, and watch the impressions. He must've been imitating someone.

The impression included someone starting a car, and a weird walk he did with Cabrera.

He ended up on the ground. I think I'll YouTube the entire video. (These are all stills.)

Let me teach you a thing or two about hitting, Melvin.

Sure, lady, I recognize you. I definitely don't think you're stalking me.

Rick Dempsey. I was already thinking of the tarp-sliding the day before they showed him doing it on the scoreboard.

Beautiful day.

Drinkwater was everywhere on this day. Here, a lady points me out as "the guy who used to think Kapstein was you." Actually, I'm at the top of the grandstand, zooming in.

Mr. Werner, I've told you a thousand times, the clubhouse toilet won't stop running...

Drinkwater and Giant Glass donated a bunch of dough via huge check.

Larry Lucchino, John Henry, and Tom Werner have a front office meeting on the field.

Before this game, they honored the employees who reached milestones. Here, one of the famous (this blog only) ticket-taking "twins" is honored for thirty years of service! I had no idea.

Drinky the Kid, aka Springer, walks that kid out for the first pitch, along with Kelly Barons.

This boxer guy from the Domincan Republic puts his belt on Papi.

Three powerful forces. Was cool that Papi went and had a catch before the game. Why not, right?

Ortiz makes Lowell laugh. Also pictured: Trot, Kapler, and Papa Jack.

Larry in the Affleck seats, conferring with the skipper, as Papi looks on. Larry and Tom sat in those sweet seats. From my vantage point at the back of the grandstand on the third base side of home plate, I watched at one point as Larry got up to leave the area. He walked up the aisle, and got stuck behinf the hot dog guy. He ducked down so people could see the game, and instructed the security guy following him to do the same. Then he walked all the way up the grandstand. A few minutes later, he walked right behind me, as he seemed to be circling the park. Is he following me or am I following him?

Schilling almost falls backwards. He's gonna be on celebrity Jeopardy, filmed this weekend at Radio City. Chan and I tried for tickets, and we got our applications in really early, but we got rejected by Trebeck. Oh well.

Millar goofs around with a fan while on deck. Every time he came up, besides being cheered by most, one lady would very loudly shout, "Hey Millahhhhhhh!"

Manny approached the batter's box.

My view.

Lowell grounds one to the left side.

Manny does the old dub-poi.

A view of the wave from whatever you call this area.

Crappy night tonight, as Yanks win, and I forget about Gedman paycheck auction until it was about fifteen minutes too late. Terrible mental mistake by me.

Happy birthday, Chan! 10-4, good buddy. (Isn't that a cool birthdate?)

Tuesday, October 03, 2006

Jay Walk

As I mentioned earlier, Chan's sister was staying at the Blue Jays' hotel last week, and some of those dudes randomly appeared in the ten minutes we were there. Above is Lilly over Chan's shoulder.
More Lilly, and probably another Jay.
Halladay. Click these to enlarge.
More Halladay.

Same Old

Your prime-time baseball playoff schedule:

Tuesday: 1 game. Yankees.
Wednesday: 1 game. Yankees.
Thursday: 1 game. Mets. (Because Yankees don't play.)
Friday: 1 game. Yankees.

With stats like these, surely New York wins the Most Valuable Baseball City Award...

I was talking with my girlfriend at Fenway the other day about how much Bud loves the Yanks. It's disgusting. And so unfair the way they do this. Other teams in prime-time won't bring in the ratings? Right, because all you ever show are the New York teams, so how are neutral fans able to grow to love any other teams in the first place? At least if the Yanks pull some sort of choke-job, the whole nation will be watching.

Monday, October 02, 2006

To The Bittersweet End

Sunday, October 1, 2006: the last game of the season.
How many times have I seen it... A rainy Fenway, with the tarp on the field, and puddles on the track. The guy who took my ticket informed me that the game would start an hour late, and gave me the option to not enter yet. I went in anyway. These weren't our seats, just a place to stay out of the rain and eat M&M's. We watched as the crew broke open bag after bag of fresh dirt, or whatever that stuff is. We figured they were using up the last of it on this final day of the season.

Hanging around underneath the grandstand was the other big event of the day. While participating in the stay-still-on-two-feet non-dance, I noticed a cool angle of the retired numbers. I love stuff like this. Pictures that reveal hidden stuff. You'd never know this was more than just a picture of some dude in a stocking cap in front of a brick wall unless you zoomed in (click on it, genius). And there's Yaz's 8.

I've seen Lucchino at the last, what, four games I've been to? When I post pics from the day before this game, you'll see him some more. I suspect he just "wants to be seen." And you can call that phony, but when was the last time Steinbrenner actually entered the seating bowl? Larry's just letting us know he's a human being, and that's what I want from a guy like that. In this moment, he hands a janitor lady an envelope. The guy was actually going around the park, personally handing every employee their, uh, holiday bonus, I guess? After he walked away, we watched as she opened it. C-note. At least one. You should've seen the smile on this woman's face, as she swept up everybody's wrappers and cups. I later saw Larry whiz past me at the top of the first base grandstand, still trying to get those envelopes to everybody.

Staring at the tarp, I made the connection: Rick Dempsey is in uniform for the Orioles. When I was growing up, he was the Orioles' catcher, and he'd come out and slide around on tarps during rain delays. I specifically remember him putting on Robin Yount's Brewers jersey (with a pillow under it in Dempsey's tradition) and rounding the bases and sliding into home. I wanted to go to their dugout and yell for him to do it. Turns out, the Red Sox were thinking like I was. NESN showed a similar routine he did at Fenway once. We watched in the concourse, along with that RemDawg Unleashed show, as the rain continued to fall. This wasn't as bad as the six-hour delay we endured earlier in the season, but pretty rough. And colder.

My girlfriend finally gave up and headed out, after being at the park for three hours without seeing any baseball. At this point, I started wandering, hoping I'd just get to see one inning. I had to work, in New York, the next morning.

I noticed "the twins" were still taking tickets. More on the left twin in my next post, which will feature stills from Saturday's game.

Finally, I'm up at my Monster standing room seat, as Wally comes out in fake rain gear. I wonder what other huge outfits they make for him. They must have to use Mark Clear's old locker for that stuff.

Papi gave out the baseballs he auctioned off.

Then Peter Gammons threw out the first ball.

Around 5:30, Hansack threw the first pitch, also his first at Fenway. My mom took a pic of his first major league pitch up in Toronto, and I captured his first home delivery.

Here's Trot in right field. Some people had a huge "We [Heart] You Trot" sign that they hung from near the Microsoft sign in this pic before the game. Terribly, they didn't break it out when he actually took the field. Note the gray sky.

Trot batted leadoff in what may have been his final Red Sox game. I knew he'd do some kind of hat tip, but by this point, the batteries in my borrowed camera started dying. So I just missed that moment. After he reached first on a single, he took off for second on the first pitch to the next batter. Would've been fun to see what would've happened, but the pitch drilled Loretta, so it didn't matter. And he wasn't about to try to steal third after that. Way to ruin the fun, Orioles.

After one, I pretty much had to leave, knowing it was already past the time I originally wanted to leave the city of bean. But, I thought, I'd better wait until Hansack allows a hit. Wouldn't want to miss a no-hitter. I'm always thinking of these things. Then Lowell hit a homer off the Coke bottles, right near me. Check out the replay. I'm right next to the dude in the huge light blue poncho and his buddy in the huge red poncho. Unfortunately my dark hoodie blends into the building in the background, so it's like the arrow is pointing to nothing at all. But it's me:

Two innings later, it was, Well, I might as well have a seat. I'm gonna miss the last train from New Haven to New York anyway. I scouted out some possibilities, and went with the ultra-rare (for me) "behind the first base dugout" seats. Plenty available. Plus, I thought it would be cool to get a shot of Hansack in front of the Monster, on the day of his no-hitter. Again, I was thinking it from inning one.

And here I am, in the loge. I noticed the ushers were keeping people out of the boxes. So this was about as good as I was gonna get. At this point. Papi bats under a freakishly gray, pre-sunset sky.

And again, with a little zoom action. From here on in, though, the camera wouldn't allow me to zoom. There was enough power for turning on,and one non-zoomed shot. Then I'd let it rest.

Then, there was an announcement over the PA, from Mr. Believes His Own Hype. (That's right, I said it. That PA guy, his subtle little messages used to be cool, because they were rare and on target. The pausing between first and last names for either extra cheers or extra boos, finding weird ways to pronounce names, like "Coco....crsssp," and rolling the R in Ramirez, stuff like that. But now, he's one step away from "Kevin.... Yoooooooou-kilis!" Anyway, he announced that as a reward for our patience, and since it was the last day and almost nobody was left in the park, we could all "feel free to sit in the lower seating bowl, or check out the Monster seats and right field roof deck." Seeing the faces of the ushers who an inning earlier were guarding those seats with their life. Terrible job by the one usher who started inviting the people right above the field boxes to move down, instead of letting people from the back to sprint down. I was one of those people right above, though, by chance, and I went right for those field boxes. And terrible job by the fact that the day I actually have Monster seats, they let any old schlub up there.

And here's Hansack in front of the Monster from my even better seats. The good thing about the state of the camera was that it reset to the higher-quality setting. So this and pics after this can be clicked on for huge, zoomable, awesome pics.

Loretta about to hit second base on his homer.

We also got to see Loretta come off the field for the last time, as he was replaced defensively after he went out to second base. And Papi was pinch-run for, so we gave him a final cheer as well. But, of course, there was one very special goodbye.

That's Trot leaving the field, waving the dirty cap to the crowd. It was great to see everybody showing their appreciation. I felt connected to that crowd. A tiny bunch of people with cheap tickets, at a game that didn't matter, standing in the rain in the good seats, happy as we'd be if we were at a World Series game. (Note Rick Dempsey cocahing first at left.)

Papi literally walks.

Hansack comes off the field--terrible job by O's getting in his way of my lens--after getting the final out of the fifth. I knew he had the no-hitter now, as the game was official.

The rain started coming down again. I wondered if everyone around me realized it was a no-hitter. Of course, officially, it wasn't. But it was a no-hit, complete game win. If the rain came hard enough and they called it. I ran across Yawkey Way, hoping to find some new batteries for the camera. Nothin'. I came back and watched the bottom of the fifth from back behind home plate under the grandstand, as I started wandering again, drenched and not wanting to get pneumonia.

Hansack came out for the top of the sixth, and just before it was to start, they called for the tarp. The no-hitter looked good now. No one was saying anything. Did they not realize it? Were they trying not to jinx it, like we did at Derek Lowe's no-no? Or did they just want to see more baseball? Above the team walks off the field for the last time.

Another delay. I perused the 2007 schedule they gave me when I entered the park. I wandered some more. I noticed that they were playing the Dempsey thing, now on the scoreboard! They wanted him to come out, just like I did. He never came out.

Here's my shot of Dempsey out on the tarp, albeit just an old video on the big board. So I came close to my lifelong dream. I made sure to get the actual tarp in this picture. Maybe I can do some Photoshopping and get Dempsey from the scoreboard tarp down onto the real tarp.

Almost everyone left. I was so far past the point of catching a train, I decided I'd sleep at my parents' house in New Haven and go into the city in the AM. So if that game continued, I was gonna be there, and in the Drinkwater/Springer seats. I went right down there. The above view is what I would've had if they'd started again. A song would play, then stop. We'd all start screaming through the raindrops during the quiet: "Play ball!" Then a new song would start. Over and over. More people left. It was me and a few hundred at Fenway Park, cold and wet, squeezing every last ounce out of the green grass and bright lights of a summer of missed opportunities. But after 40 minutes or so, they called it. PA guy wished us well, recapped what we'd seen that day, as if it were the beginning of part two of a two-part episode of any sit-com, and sent us out into the rainy night, to the strains of Auld Lang Syne. Before anyone could grab me for a New Year's-style sway-along, I headed for the warmth of the car, sloshing through the aisles, then the concourse, then the streets. Three minutes later, with Sweet Caroline fading almost completely from earshot, instead of walking through Kenmore Square with thousands of others coming from the same place as me, I experienced Boston as it would be had there never been a baseball team there. Just me, walking to the car, an occasional decidedly non-baseball-y person passing me in the night, probably also looking for warmth somewhere...

And then I called my dad from a payphone at a MassPike rest stop and talked him through bidding on a Gedman-worn Cardinals BP jersey on eBay for me. I won in the final minutes. Nice job, dad. I bet nobody expected me to say that.

So, the Red Sox were good to us in many ways on this day. Telling the ushers to tell us the game was delayed and that we didn't have to come in yet if we don't want to. Giving out next year's schedule earlier than any other year. Giving us 20% off all weekend at the Yawkey Way Store. (I actually got a new hat because of that. 16 bucks.) Letting us sit literally wherever we wanted. Lucchino literally handing out hundred dollar bills to each employee personally. And still some caller on EEI on my way home complains about how they shouldn't have played the game and they just wanted to take our money. A lot of people say that stuff. But they gave me a pretty memorable experience despite the worst of circumstances.

Tomorrow will be a hugely anti-climactic post: Pics of the second-to-last game.

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