Thursday, November 11, 2010

Red Sox and Veterans

In 1945, the occurrence of World War II resulted in the cancellation of the All-Star game. I’ll be honest. I’m not sure why they cancelled the all-star game, but the season itself was going on. If you play the season, you think one day would be easy to fit in. But, I wasn’t alive during 1945, so who am I to argue? Maybe they figured that since all the actual stars were not with their clubs, and instead fighting the war, it seemed weird to have a non-all star game. The Red Sox, for instance, were missing Ted Williams, Bobby Doerr, Johnny Pesky, and Dom DiMaggio. Those four could very well have been on that team. For whatever reason, the game wasn’t held.

Instead, they baseball teams played exhibition games with the proceeds going towards the war effort. Cities and regions that had more than one team got to see a game pitting those two squads. Years away from interleague play, those games would have been quite the event. The game played at Fenway Park had the Red Sox squaring off against the Braves. Over 23,000 people saw the game, and raised $70,000. That’s quite a chunk of change.

I’ve always thought these games were interesting. I can’t imagine those games happening today. Sure, MLB still wants to support our troops and veterans. That’s obvious. But, staging exhibition games in the middle of the season for that purpose? That’s pretty incredible.  I wonder what kind of money games like that could raise today.

Thank you veterans!

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