Category Archives: Boston Red Sox

I’m out

Baseball card of Mike GreenwellI have to hand it to baseball. I always pegged voluntarily killing a season and permanently alienating fans as more of a hockey move.

There are a lot of people upset right now, as they should be. While every other sport is, even if just for the cameras, engaging with their players and working towards a plausible scenario where play can return, baseball is stuck at home, arguing over directions with empty luggage and clothes strewn about the room. “Distraction” may not be the best word, but in such a tumultuous time, there is value in comfort, and baseball could have provided that.

I’m just not one of those people right now.

My anger with how the Red Sox have treated a championship core — as nuisance employees asking for a deserved raise rather than as the bedrock of a winning and profitable club — led me to the decision, months ago, to sit out the 2020 season and spend my money and energy elsewhere. But the conduct of the owners here, and the constant circus surrounding whether this labor impasse will ever lead to a sham 50-game season, has me in a new place. I think I’m out for 2021, too. And perhaps beyond that. It’s a long way beyond 1993, you see. Continue reading

When in doubt, turn to hockey

Hockey cards of Boston Bruins players spread out on display

I was trying to think earlier: when was the last time I knew for sure that I would be home, all day, every day?

Throw out any year beyond college, since I’ve been thankfully employed for that time. That’s five days a week, minimum, where I know I have to leave the house. College, too, included classes for nine months, and by then I had friends and a part-time job, so even the summers were spoken for.

The friend aspect was lesser in high school, and even middle school, but there were still some days during the summers then — maybe a Friday or Saturday here and there — where I’d have plans and get to leave the house. This basically takes me to sixth grade and earlier, during the summer, sans friends, where I knew I’d be indoors, left to my own devices for entertainment.

I’m not 10 anymore, but I am home. I’m going to be home for some time, and there’s not much else to do. So forgive me if I revert to some pre-teen tendencies, like playing with hockey cards. Continue reading

Even with the rain, it’s just a game

Photo taken by Brock Holt during Wednesday night's rain delay

Living within 4.3 miles of Fenway Park, as the crow flies, it shouldn’t be quite such an ordeal getting to a game.

I could walk for about an hour and a half, which isn’t the worst option when the humidity isn’t at its current 114 percent level, where it’s been for the past six weeks. There’s the T, and when it’s actually running, the Red Line to the Green Line should take about 30 minutes. But the red line doesn’t really run these days, and the aforementioned humidity turns Park Street into a sweltering torture chamber. Then there’s driving, which is a more horrible option as each day passes.

But truth be told, these are minor inconveniences. If I was invested and careful with money, I could go see the Red Sox much more often than I do. And with the specter of turning that four mile distance into about 20 looming in the coming weeks, it seemed right to head back out to a game.

I did, and they lost 6-2 to the Kansas City Royals. That’s the least important part of this, though. Continue reading

We now go live to Brock Holt…

Such is the life of casual baseball viewing: On Thursday night I was reading a book at my desk, feet propped up, with the Red Sox in my peripheral vision and serving as background noise. They were in the early stages of a 19-3 beat down of the Yankees to start a four-game series that could determine whether the end of this summer has the team in the pennant race or another eight weeks of pleasant background noise. It’s not an exaggeration to say that, after four World Series wins in 14 years, either will be fine with me.

Anyway. As I was getting more and more engrossed in Ryan H. Walsh’s Astral Weeks: A Secret History of 1968 and all the nooks and crannies of Boston as a city in transition, I was snapped 51 years back into the present thanks to some ambient mics:

“OH GODDAMN IT!” Continue reading

161 and counting with Mookie Betts

What makes for a successful season?

Expectations vary, and the noise around the Red Sox right now includes a vocal minority (hopefully) who will be quick to point out that, without a World Series trophy at the end of the next month, than the 107 wins earned through the first 161 games will have been worthless.

These people are dicks, clearly. Because if nothing else, through those first 161 games, we’ve had the privilege of watching Mookie Betts play this game 135 times. To watch what he’s done this year and still sit cynically waiting for the bottom to drop out is beyond me. This has been incredible, and it only seems right to get it down before the moment passes. Continue reading