|Photo by Bryanne|
As I alluded to Wednesday, I love this stuff. I admit, I sit in the stands sometimes imagining it’s 100 years ago. I look out and imagine Babe Ruth warming up in right field. Or Ty Cobb patrolling center field with a crowd full of people in suit coats and bowler hats. That’s the wall Ted Williams banged hits off. I imagine people sitting in the same seats I’m in looking out at Tris Speaker playing just behind second base, knowing he was deep enough and marveling at his speed. Don’t worry, I know. It’s not exactly the same. The park looks a bit different. I know the seats have all been replaced. They’ve replaced all the sod, so it’s not even the same grass. But, somehow it’s still all the same. There’s still a connection. I’ll just sit and imagine.
Not that the wonders of Fenway are only in my imagination. As I’m sure it has for all of you, Fenway has provided me with plenty of real time memories of my own. I’ve sat in the current seats and watched plenty of unforgettable things. Some of my most memorable? Off the top of my head…
The 2005 Opening Day ring ceremony. Never thought I’d actually be in the park to see a ring ceremony (let alone two). It was pure joy and celebration. I didn’t want it to end.
The 1999 All-Star game. Talk about history. Everybody who was anybody was at that game. The current all-stars. The legendary Hall-of-Famers. Pedro Martinez. What a game.
The 1999 Home Run Derby. Sure, it’s just a silly contest. Sure, it’s lost a little bit of luster lately with various indiscretions of some of the participants. But, it was McGwire and Sosa head-to-head. It was just fun.
The Father’s Day catch. Ten year’s ago, the Sox opened Fenway up on Father’s Day so fathers and sons (and daughters, and whomever) could come have a game of catch on the field. How cool was that? To actually grab a ball and a glove, and play catch on the Fenway grass? The same spot where all those players I mentioned in the beginning roamed? Fantastic. I even made sure to “dive” for one ball. Got some grass stains on my jeans from that maneuver. Don’t care. Fenway grass stains. I didn’t care that they didn’t ever really wash out. (Frankly, I’m surprised I even tried to wash them.)
Of course, there are tons of memories beyond those. D-Lowe’s no-hitter. Drew’s grand slam. Ted Williams’s memorial celebration. And on, and on. And, there will be several more memories on the way. I can’t wait.
Happy 100th Birthday Fenway Park!