Wow…now that was quite the game.
Spolier alert…if you’ve DVR’d this afternoon’s game, please watch and then come back and read.
But for the rest of you who either got to watch the game from home, or were listening to it on Game Day Audio at work, or found some other means to follow it – Let’s discuss, shall we??
I mean, to me, this has all the feeling of a game that can really light the fire under the team as we head down the stretch. I don’t want to make too big of a deal about it, because yes, it was against the Orioles, who have struggled this season, but still. Let’s look at a couple of important factors here:
1. This was a total team effort. Granted, Pedroia has been unbelieveable, and continued to be so today. But what about the bunts from Coco and Jacoby. Or the homerun Ellsbury robbed earlier in the game. Or the two-run triple from Kotsay?? Or the great bullpen work from Justin Masterson? Has anybody else noticed the bullpen has been quietly doing their best ’07 impression as of late?
2. This is not a game we were supposed to win. Down 4-0, late, I don’t care who you’re playing. That is an emotional win. Going into an off-day, with a sweep, culminating in a walk-off victory is going to feel pretty neat.
Anyhow, day games are always fun here in the Front Office. For starters, it means we get made-to-order omlets in our employee dining. Which makes everybody a little more pleasant. Secondly, day-time baseball is just great. There’s a totally different atmosphere in the ballpark. Most likely due to the fact that it is a total “Ferris Bueller” crowd – 3/4 of the people in attendance either have the flu, a terrible stomach virus, or (in the more dispicable of cases) are visting lost a loved one in the hospital.
Anyhow, as I mentioned in the Insider e-newsletter, today’s game marked the 455th consecutive sellout of Fenway Park. This ties us for the longest string of consecutive sellouts in the history of baseball. The Cleveland Indians held the mark at 455 during their streak which lasted from June 12, 1995 through April 4, 2001.
This really is quite an accomplishment. For those of you younger fans, who may not remember some of the “leaner” years in Red Sox history, trust me, it hasn’t always been this way. And as much as we hope that it continues this way for a long time, we must acknowledge that it’s possible that it might not be. Those who are old (errr…”young”) enough to remember the ’67 Impossible Dream season, will also be able to tell you that during the first half of the ’66 season, there were hardly any fans at the ballpark. I’m talking about like 20 seats (or more) together, just plain EMPTY.
That’s why these past 5 years in Red Sox history have been so incredible. And that’s why this is definitely an appropriate time to take a look back and be thankful for all the great times we’ve had. As fans we can be thankful for making the postseason every year since the streak started, with the lone exception of 2006. We can be thankful for 2 World Series Championships, and a host of other memories. But if I may get sappy here for a moment, we, as an organization have a lot to be thankful for as well. We have the greatest fans in all of baseball. That bears repeating…the GREATEST fans in all of baseball. When the national media tells you that you all hate Bill Buckner, you respond with one of the most moving Opening Day moments I can ever remember. When Mariano Rivera was introduced on Opening Day of 2005, you gave a great, yet respectful mock cheer. And when Jordan Leandre ran around the bases on Jimmy Fund Day a couple of years back, you knew exactly how profound a moment that was. Again…the greatest fans in all of baseball.
Anyhow, I think at this point I’m the last member of the Front Office still actually in the Front Office. I think everybody else has gone out to celebrate the win. And since I’d hate for them to think that I’m better than that, I suppose I’ll have to go join them..
All the best from the game and from Inside the Front Office!
“The Voice of the Nation”