April 2009

Day Game!

I don’t know about the rest of you, but I LOVE day games.  We’ve got the 2-time MVP of the World Baseball Classic starting for us this afternoon (as our 3rd starter!  This only reinforces my giddiness about our pitching staff this year.

Predictions??  How many innings for Daisuke?  How many Ks?

I’m having some trouble uploading photos onto my blog, so hopefully I can get that fixed in time to get you some good behind-the-scenes shots from Opening Week.

Keep checking back!

As for the happenings in the office right now…well, all of the TVs are set to NESN which is playing some sort of Chuck Norris bodybuilding infomercial.  I don’t know how that’s relevant to anything, but I just looked up and notice that I was surrounded by a bunch of Chuck Norris’s…

All the best from the Front Office,

“The Voice of the Nation”

PS – I should mention that prior to Chuck Norris, there was a great infomercial for Jack LaLanne’s Power Juicer.  He’s mighty convincing…

Dance of the Southpaws

Getting ready for tonight’s game, we have lefty Jon Lester vs. very tough Tampa Bay lefty Scott Kazmir.

Let’s hope Lester can match Beckett’s performance from last night and that our offense continues to work the Tampa Bay staff!

Anybody have predictions for tonight’s game?  Score?  HRs?  Ks for Lester???

 

Let’s try this again…

Looking out the windows of the Front Office it almost seems (dare I say it…) sunny outside!

I’m sure it’s not going to be your picture-perfect warm Opening Day, but so far it looks like we’ll have good enough weather to get the game in – which certainly wasn’t the case yesterday.

So, as we look forward to seeing Josh Beckett take the hill today, I have a nice shot from the Big I to share with all of you.  If you click on this link here, you can see it and actually make it your desktop background if you’d like.

http://boston.redsox.mlb.com/bos/fan_forum/wallpaper.jsp?partnerId=ed-2335470-77762926&source=ed-2335470-77762926

It’s a photo of the sunrise from yesterday morning (over Fenway Park).

All the best from a much calmer Front Office,
“The Voice of the Nation”

PS – I hope some of you were able to attend the Red Sox Foundation’s Welcome Home Dinner last night.  It was a riot, and the players seemed to be in great spirits!

Opening Day Postponed…

ahhh…I can hardly wait one more day, but it looks like we’ll have to.  While we hoped that the weather (rain) would hold off, unfortunately the forecast looks to dire to start a game today.

So today’s game (our Season Opener) will now be played tomorrow (Tuesday) at 4:05pm.

Here’s the official team release:

 

For Immediate Release

Monday, April 6, 2009

 

TODAY’S RED SOX OPENING DAY GAME POSTPONED

Game To Be Made Up on Tuesday, April 7 at 4:05 p.m.

 

BOSTON, MA – Today’s Red Sox 2009 Opening Day game at Fenway Park has been postponed due to the forecast of heavy rain throughout the afternoon and evening.  The game is rescheduled for Tuesday, April 7, at 4:05 p.m. to better accommodate fans who must reschedule.  Opening Day festivities now will take place on Tuesday.  Gates will open at 2:05 p.m.

 

The forecast provided by the Red Sox weather service, Meteorlogix, indicates heavy rain, strong winds and possible thunderstorms will begin during the early afternoon hours and continue throughout the evening. 

 

“After consulting with our weather service and other professional meteorologists, it became apparent it would be extremely unlikely, if not impossible, that we could get a complete game in today so the decision was made to postpone until Tuesday,” said Larry Lucchino, President/CEO.  “Our fans look forward to this unofficial Red Sox Nation holiday each year, and we want to make sure that they are able to enjoy the full experience including both the special pregame ceremonies and a full nine innings of play.  We reserved an alternate rain date for tomorrow for just such adverse circumstances as present themselves today.”

 

It marks the first Red Sox home-opening postponement since 2003, when the game was called because of rain. 

Tickets for Monday’s opener will be good on Tuesday, April 7.

NESN, WEEI and SBN (WWDJ 1150 AM) will carry the rescheduled 4:05 pm game. 

 

The Red Sox and Rays are scheduled to play the second game of the series on Wednesday at 7:10 pm at Fenway Park.

 

The Red Sox Foundation Welcome Home Dinner Presented By Covidien will take place as scheduled at the House of Blues Boston. Doors open at 5:30 p.m. and the program begins at 6:00 p.m.

 

— RED SOX —

 

It’s here!!!

Happy Opening Day!!!

After a whole offseason of waiting, and Spring Training full of excitement, the 2009 regular season begins today!

The mood in the office is ummm…crazed (as it always is on Opening Day).  Everyone here is running around doing about a thousand different things trying to make sure that the season gets started right.

Our Fenway Ambassadors and others are preparing for our Opening Ceremonies; Our Media Relations staff is hurredly trying to make sure they can get everything ready (stats, lineups, etc.) for the hungry media’s arrival – no easy task; and the Red Sox Foundation group is preparing the House of Blues for tonight’s Welcome Home charity event.

Simply put…verybody is just doing their part – and then some, to make sure that everything runs smoothly today.

The Big I (our team photographer) got up especially early this morning to take the “Opening Day sunrise over Fenway” shot.  It has become a sort of tradition over the past few years to take this photo and send it out to everyone in the Front Office as a way to really kick off the year.

As soon as I’m able to track the Big I down (he’s obviously very busy today too), I’ll try to post the picture here.

All the best from a very busy and excited Front Office!
“The Voice of the Nation”

Opening Day National Anthem REVEALED!!!

Let the suspense be put to rest!!! 

Now the only question is…will his special lady friend (supermodel wife) be joining him!?!?

Auf wiedersehen!

“The Voice of the Nation”

 

For Immediate Release

April 3, 2009

 

 

GRAMMY AWARD WINNING AND MULTI-PLATINUM ARTIST SEAL TO

PERFORM NATIONAL ANTHEM

AT RED SOX 2009 OPENING DAY GAME AT FENWAY PARK

Keith Lockhart and the Boston Pops to perform “God Bless America” and “Take Me Out To The Ballgame” during 7th Inning

 

BOSTON, MA – Three-time Grammy Award winner Seal will sing the U.S. National Anthem prior to the start of the Opening Day game of the 2009 Boston Red Sox season on April 6.  The internationally-renowned artist, who has sold more than 15 million albums worldwide, is in Boston as part of his current North American tour.  His newest album, SOUL, is his latest chart-topping record and has sold more than two million copies worldwide over the last six months.

Maestro Keith Lockhart and members of the Boston Pops will perform “God Bless America” and “Take Me Out To The Ballgame” during the Opening Day 7th inning stretch.  Both pieces are featured on the Boston Pops Orchestra’s new recording, The Red Sox Album, which will be released on April 6.  The CD was produced in conjunction with the Boston Red Sox and Major League Baseball, and includes new arrangements of Fenway’s traditional fan anthem “Sweet Caroline” and the Dropkick Murphys’ “I’m Shippin’ Up to Boston”.

A British singer and songwriter, Seal is known for his one-of-a-kind soaring, husky baritone voice and classic songwriting.  He has seen success across numerous genres of music, ranging from the Grammy Award-winning and 1995 US chart-topper “Kiss From A Rose” to “Don’t Cry” to 1991’s U.S. Top Ten single “Crazy”.  Seal’s latest album SOUL is comprised of twelve classic soul songs, and was produced in partnership with legendary producer David Foster.  The album’s first single is Seal’s rendition of the famous Sam Cooke song “A Change is Gonna Come”.  Seal will perform later that night (April 6) at the Orpheum in Boston.

 

The Boston Pops and the Boston Red Sox have had a storied history of working together in recent years.  Various members of the Red Sox, both past and present, have appeared in performances at Symphony Hall including Manager Terry Francona and 1967 Cy Young Award winner Jim Lonborg.  Various Pops ensembles have also performed at Fenway Park during some of the Red Sox’ most memorable moments, including Opening Ceremonies in 2005 and 2008 when World Series championships were celebrated, and Game One of the 2007 World Series.

 

Recent performers on Opening Day at Fenway Park include Steven Tyler (2002); Lou Rawls and Ray Charles (2003); Perkins School for the Blind student John Castillo and tenor John McDermott (2004); Boston Pops and Boston Symphony (2005/2008); Jimmy Fund patient Jordan Leandre (2006); and Harry Connick, Jr. along with Robert Goulet (2007).  Other recent notable performers at Fenway Park have included James Taylor, LeAnn Rimes, Dropkick Murphys, Kelly Clarkson, Donna Summer and numerous other award-winning and chart-topping vocalists.

 

The Red Sox are requesting that all fans at Fenway Park on Opening Day take their seats by 1:20 pm to enjoy the pre-game ceremonies before the start of the game at 2:05 pm.

 

–RED SOX–

 

New Fenway Park Improvements for 2009!

For Immediate Release

April 2, 2009

 

RED SOX PRESENT “YEAR VIII FENWAY PARK IMPROVEMENTS” TO MAYOR MENINO

Off-Season Improvements Vital to the Long Term Preservation of Fenway Park; Mayor also sampled new menu items introduced by Red Sox and ARAMARK

 

BOSTON, MA — The Boston Red Sox today welcomed Mayor Thomas M. Menino and city officials to Fenway Park to showcase the “Year VIII Improvements” at America’s Most Beloved Ballpark, which celebrates its 97th anniversary this year. 

 

The Year VIII improvements are highlighted by the Right Field Roof repair and expansion, which marks the completion of the improvements and repairs in the upper sections of Fenway Park; concrete repair and waterproofing of the original 1912 seating bowl; and necessary repairs to the Jeano Building, including the replacement of its roof and restoration of the windows and doors.

 

“From Day One, the mission of this ownership group led by John Henry and Tom Werner has been to protect and preserve America’s Most Beloved Ballpark for the long term.  With the completion of the Year VIII improvements, Fenway Park is poised to serve fans for several decades,” said Larry Lucchino, President/CEO of the Boston Red Sox.  “And that preservation and protection would not have been possible without the support of the City of Boston and, most importantly, the vision of Mayor Thomas M. Menino.  One of Mayor Menino’s enduring legacies will be that the Boston Red Sox can play baseball at Fenway Park for the next 40 to 50 years.” 

 

All off-season projects were designed by D’Agostino Izzo & Quirk of Somerville, MA, and overseen by the Boston office of Struever Bros. Eccles & Rouse. 

 

The Year VIII Fenway Park Improvements include:

 

Right Field Roof Box Area Improvements

 

The debut of the expanded Right Field Roof Box area signifies the completion of improvements and repairs in the upper sections of Fenway Park, including foundation reinforcements and the use of steel and precast construction, which is consistent with the standards of the new construction projects of the past seven years.

 

The 383 Right Field Roof Box seats that previously existed have been replaced by 574 new seats, and 100 dedicated standing room spaces with drink rails have been added.  Additionally, new stools with drink rails similar to those above the Green Monster and standing room have been added to new wood-decked terraces that will serve as the new home to Conigliaro’s Corner.  Expanded concession stands featuring new menu items and restrooms were also constructed on a brand new concrete concourse.  The Budweiser Right Field Roof Deck has also been expanded with new seats at tables that offer in-seat service and an extended dedicated standing room platform. 

 

The remaining private suites in Right Field (R19 – R21) have also been updated and improved, completing the transformation of the EMC Level. All suites at Fenway Park are now equipped with locations for wheelchairs, a wheelchair accessible restroom, and new interior appointments and furnishings.  

 

The Right Field Roof Box area is topped by a new sign featuring one of the Red Sox’ newest partners, the New England convenience store Cumberland Farms.  The neon sign features the blue and green logo of the Canton, MA-based organization, the largest convenience store in the Northeast.

 

The Right Field Roof Box area improvements were constructed by William A. Berry and Son of Andover, MA.

 

 

1912 Seating Bowl Repair and Waterproofing

 

A large portion of the lower seating bowl, between Sections 14 and 28, was repaired and waterproofed during the off-season.  Originally constructed in 1912, this is the oldest part of Fenway Park and this project was undertaken to successfully prolong the life of the ballpark. 

 

The repair required removing and reinstalling the Dugout Seats, Field Box Seats, Loge Box Seats and Grandstand Seats in these sections with new or refurbished seats.  All Field Box Seats, originally installed in the 1970s, were replaced by seats with cushioned bottoms and cup-holders, and end standards replicating the 1934 chairs, making them uniform with other premium seats in the ballpark.  The Loge Box Seats were also replaced with new seats containing cup-holders.  The blue Grandstand Seats, originally installed in 1934 and the only wooden seats left in Major League Baseball, have been refurbished and fitted with a self-rising spring mechanism that will enable the seat to retract automatically once a patron stands up.  This will provide more room in the seating rows and improved mobility for fans entering or exiting the rows.  Every Grandstand seat in these sections now has no less than an industry standard 18 inches in width. 

 

The removal of the asphalt poured on cracked or broken portions of the concrete to provide temporary fixes over decades resulted in a lowering of the central aisle between the Field Box Seats and the Loge Box Seats by approximately 8 inches, which will provide fans sitting in the lower rows of the Loge Boxes with improved views of the playing field.  The work in the 1912 seating bowl also included modifications to two wheelchair and companion seating locations in the Grandstand sections, creating elevated platforms and improving sightlines.

 

All seats were refurbished and/or replaced by American Seating, the same company that has worked on the seats at Fenway Park since its inception in 1912.  The concrete repair work was done by NER Construction of Wilmington, MA, who in the 2007/08 off-season completed a similar scope of work in the Bleacher sections.

 

 

Jeano Building Repairs

 

The roof of the Jeano Building was replaced during the off-season.  The Jeano Building, which was built in 1914 next door to Fenway Park, serves as the home of the Red Sox Front Offices, the visiting team’s batting cage, the newly expanded Jordan’s Third Base Deck, the Third Base Concourse and Game On! Boston.  Over the years, the building has housed automotive based companies, radio and television broadcasting studios and a bowling alley.  Originally called the John B. Smith Building, it was renamed “Jeano” to honor Jean Yawkey, the wife of former Red Sox owner Tom Yawkey when he bought the building in 1960. 

 

The replacement of the roof was also accompanied by necessary complementary changes including the addition of a new parapet, changes to the windows and doors, and additional masonry work.  The windows of the building, which were originally installed in the 1970s, were replaced by replica 1914 windows.  Replica 1914 wooden doors have replaced a steel door at 4 Yawkey Way in a 12-foot wide entry way designed for a car elevator that was at one time housed in the space.

 

The Jeano Building repairs were performed by Gilbane Building Company of Boston, MA.

 

 

New Concession Areas and New Menu Items

 

A new Red Sox Legends BBQ stand featuring BBQ chicken, BBQ turkey legs and BBQ beef ribs platters with corn on the cob and potato salad will open on Yawkey Way adjacent to Gate D and the NESNHD Stage. 

 

The Red Sox and ARAMARK also introduced several new concession items that showcase Boston’s distinctive tastes, feature new bold and spicy flavors, and highlight the use of local and seasonal ingredients.  Some of the new menu items fans will find to further enhance their ballpark experience at Fenway Park include: shrimp rolls and steak tips at the new Surf and Turf Grill on the newly expanded Jordan’s Third Base Deck; Gobbler sandwich (turkey, stuffing, gravy and cranberry); made-to-order chicken and beef tacos and burritos; boneless chicken wings (sweet and spicy and buffalo); and three sliders in a bag.  New for the kids are on-premise photo cookies, hand scooped ice cream featuring new Red Sox flavors, and fresh-popped popcorn.  Samples of these items were available for Mayor Menino as part of the walk-through.

 

Along with all the new items to be introduced at the ballpark in 2009, the club also displayed ‘The Starting Nine’ items available during games in April as part of Fenway Family Hour.  During the first hour after gates open, nine popular concession items including Fenway Franks, Pizza Slices, Bag of Burgers, Pretzels, Pop Corn, Cotton Candy, Fruit Cups, Veggie Cups and Hoodsie ice-cream cups will be available for up to 50% off regular prices.

 

 

Seven (and now Eight!) Years of Fenway Park Improvements:  Fenway Park has undergone a series of annual improvements since the Henry-Werner Group purchased the team in 2002.  Most visible among them are the addition of the Green Monster Seats in 2003, the Right Field Roof Seats in 2004, the EMC Club and State Street Pavilion in 2006, the Jordan’s Third Base Deck in 2007, and an expansion of the State Street Pavilion seating with the addition of more than 800 new seats and the unveiling of the new Coca-Cola Corner in 2008.  Another new addition in 2008 was ‘The Bleacher Bar,’ a restaurant located under the center field bleachers that gives patrons a view of centerfield from a special two-way glass paneled retractable door, which remains open year-round.

 

–RED SOX–