Tuesday, April 06, 2010

Sox-Yanks, Opening Night 2010 Photo/Video Gallery

Here we go. Some vids first:

All spring training, I thought, If Mike Lowell is still on the team on Opening Day, what an ovation he's gonna get. So there my mom and I were at Fenway Park, trying to figure out who'd be announced before Lowell, so I'd know when to start rolling. 24--Manny/Dewey. 23--Cameron, a starter. 22--Billy Hall. That was my man. Soon as I heard his name I got ready. And we went nuts for Lowell, and he tipped the cap.

Below, two Pedro vids. More on that later.

Now back to the beginning. Mom drove to Providence and then we headed up to Boston around 3. Remember my teachings, people: Rule #1--never pay any money to park at Fenway on a Sunday. Meters are free. Unless you're arriving right at game time, you should be able to find a metered spot within walking distance.

Got in and did the Monster Seats thing, after waiting on a long line. After that initial half-hour, we went right to the home dugout. Above is the scoreboard with the rare "Opening Night" on there.

Almost right away I spotted Dr. Dre of all people. Turns out he was there pimping a new MLB line of headphones. Only $400 each! Somebody has to hook up Dre and Kapstein (though Jeremy was headphones-free on this night).

And here comes Dre right at us into the dugout. He had no tough-guy stage-face, and almost seemed surprised and embarrassed to be noticed, but definitely happy that he was.

John Henry then walked into the dugout, to zero percent of the amount of recognition Dre got!

I looked to my right and saw the puffy face of Curt Schilling. I had no idea Nomar was in this shot till I looked at it at home. They both were there as ESPN employees.

Amalie and Theo.

I recognized NBC-4's Bruce Beck, since I watched the New York TV stations from age 0-31.5.

I swear I tried really hard* to give this guy the Benjamin of the Doubt when he came slinking back to the Red Sox side. But when he came right out treating Sox fans like we're imbeciles, and acting like the Yankees and Red Sox are similar, I turned on him quickly. Maybe he'll change his ways. Here he chats with Howard Bryant.

*not that really hard

Youk went over to meet a Joe DiMaggio jersey-wearing Yankee fan.

Over on the Yanks' side now. The Yanks seem to be required to wear helmets in BP now. Teixeira had the flapless on. First hawk appearance of 2010--look closely. Click all to enlarge if you forgot or something.

The old ticket booths on Yawkey Way are currently mini-museums to the last five pennant-winning Sox teams. Here's the 1975 one.

And here's a look inside the '67. It just hit me--why is Hawk Harrelson's name on the back of his jersey? I'll go back and read the card another day for answers.

Hadn't taken this shot in a while, so....

Looking at the new home plate concession area from up the third base line. SO much more space there where the bathrooms used to be.

Opening Night. The long, wet winter is over.

Looking out behind the right field grandstand at Remy's new place, and the roof of the Baseball Tavern beyond.

Tek, first guy on the field in home white uni.

Pedroia's first crazy leg-stretch of '10.

Too bad I didn't get a better shot of the Pru with red on the top. I've always known the Empire State Building to have different colored lights, but in all my nights in Boston, I've never seen the Pru go colorific. (Though it is creative with its "GO SOX" and/or "1" light-routine.)

So I tried the new veggie dog. It'll do, flavor-wise, but I don't know if I'm gonna spend five bucks on it every time. I will try the veggie burger next time.

And now we're getting closer to game time, with a flyover, and an anthem which included fireworks that we couldn't see since we were under the roof in the back of section 9.

Russell Nua introduced. It was fun as usual to boo the entire Yankee staff.

Johnny Pesky, still goin' strong.

Flag on the Monster.

Joe Castiglione and Don Orsillo emceed. When Don said there was a special guest who was a great Sox player, we had no idea what was coming. Then I heard "1999 All-Star Game." (!) Oh my lord, it's Pedro. Amazing.

37,000 went ballistic as our beloved Pedro sauntered in from left field, stopping only to greet a guy who loves to be the center of attention even when someone else is in the spotlight.

I'm glad this was kept a secret, or else WEEI's giveaway cards would have said something like "Go Home Pedro, We All Totally Hate You, We Meaning the Assholes Who Work at Sexist, Racist, Homophobe Central, Not Any Actual Fans, Whom We Mock For Loving the Team Despite That They Keep us in Business. God We're Fucking Pathetic." You know, if they had room.

Pedro went over to Pesky...

...and then greeted the fans.

Now Pedro's with his old mates. Here's he seems to be playing "guess which hand?" with Wake.

Now hugging Papi.

And here it is, the first pitch of 2010. Over 70 degrees at 8:00--and I never did put the sweatshirt on over my short-sleeve shirt.

It was Easter Sunday, but this fan remembered not everyone celebrates the 'ster.

In the seventh, there was commotion at Canvas Alley down in front of us. Non-stop picture taking. I finally figured out it was whoever would be singing GBA, which is only sung on Sundays at Fenway. Turns out it was Steven Tyler from Aerosmith.

He couldn't seem to walk very well, so this daughter/wife aided him on and off the field, and harmonized with him on the last line of the song.

Same deal in the eighth--this time, I figured it out. Who else would be there to sing Sweet Caroline? (Though I was still keeping my fingers crossed for some kind of crazy hip-hop version by Dr. Dre.) When I saw the "Keep the Dodgers in Brooklyn" jacket, I knew it was definitely Neil Diamond. (Love the sentiment, but he's a few years late!)

Here's Neil during a shortened version of SC. Oh, and I liked how our section kept doing "Marcooo" "Scutaroooo." Reminded me of being a kid and hearing the grandstand and bleachers go back and forth: "less filling!", "tastes great!". However, I feel the Marco and the Scutaro should be short, not long. When I would play that game at the pool (my method was to always run outside the pool when I was Polo), the Marco and the Polo were crisp and quick. Not every chant in the right field grandstand has to be in Dar-yl style!

As you know, we came back to beat the bastids. The Yankee fan count was a little low, but there were still plenty of 'em, each one trying to out-obnoxious-ify the next, though many like to just play the "role" of loud New Yorker. I got chunks of guys like those in my stool. But the guy right near us was a true fuckface. First inning, he starts with the rare outward racism. Ellsbury got out, and he yelled for him to go back to his reservation. Victor Martinez came up, and after mocking the Latin music that played, he turned to the Sox fans who brought him and said, "you guys have a few of them, don't you?" Then he just mouthed off the whole game. The good news was that he required beer at such a rate so that he wasn't in his seat for most of the game. When it was 5-1, him and the other entitled Yankee fans were more certain of victory than anything in the world. Seeing them have to shut up alone was worth the price of admission.

The man came in and put the nail in their coffin.

Youk smoothed out the ground before the last inning started, and soon...

Dirty Water, Tessie, Joy to the World... Us, 1-0. Them, 0-1.

Neil Diamond singing Sweet Caroline:

i wish i had been there!
i'm just a few too many states away. a friend of mine won the green monster lottery and had to decline because he had to work in nc. i cried inside.
Love the commentary. i'll definitely be back. Happy rematch night.
thanks Jere!! Loved this post. always love your perspective.

i used your heads-up post a few weeks back to grab 1 ticket to tonight's game and had my brother grab 1 too.

thanks man! keep it up.

andy from waterbury/somerville
Sweet! Thanks...

Glad you're in for tonight. I have tonight too but wish I was seeing Lackey's first start.

Toosoxy, I added your blog to my links.
Youk went over to meet a Joe DiMaggio jersey-wearing Yankee fan.

I was over taking pics of Nomar and Schill at the time, but a guy near me yelled out, "Hey Youk, you're gonna need to wash your hands twice!"
Everything about having Pedro throw out the first pitch was absolutely perfect. Even Slappy giving him a handshake/hug didn't diminish it one iota. Neil Diamond coming out to bring the schmaltz was a Tom Werner Special, but even that was ok.

But I really didn't like the 5-year-old kid coming out to do the Herb Brooks speech at all. I get that he's been doing this schtick for a while, but it still felt way more creepy than cute, and replacing the Soviets with the Yankees made me cringe. Don't give easy ammunition to the folks who love to go on about how the Sox and their fans are way too obsessed with the Yanks. It fed right into the whole pre-2004 inferiority complex; shouldn't the organization be way past that at this point?
Since we couldn't see the scoreboard, I assumed that speech thing was ON the scoreboard. Then when he said Yankees, I was like, Oh, okay, he recorded a Yankee version. (I didn't even know if it was the same kid or a purposely-done imitation of him.) I guess it had to do with the fact that the Yanks are champs AGAIN for the first time since 1923. But yeah no need for that kid I guess. A little odd in general. It's not like you'd get a that gopher or whatever to do his head-turn live.
A little late commenting, but Boston Properties (owners of the Pru) upgraded the rim lights to LED. They're doing a lot more with the colors now.
Thanks for the update. Big changes for them!

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