Monday, May 7, 2012

It led up to.....this.....entagled & wrapped

As we come into middle of May.The baseball season for 2012 is upon us.The Red Sox  have now reached 30 games.They are just under .500.This comes with a backdrop of problems.These problems have gone on since the purchase of the club in 2002.The most recent is from the end of the 2011 season.This only tells a little of a much bigger story. Tom Warner,Larry Luchino & John Henry are the suspected culprit's.They have allowed many things to take place over the last ten years. There had always been mixed emotions when they took over.Swarming like bee's around the ear.Annoyance had become usual in Red Sox nation.The club still hadn't seen a World Series title in 86 years.This fueled the fire by reputations of the Billionaire Men.As far as the fan was concerned.They were not a Red Sox fan, but more investor & capitalist with bigger plans.The suspicion wasn't far from the truth.The 2002 deal included all having to do with Fenway Park & Boston's Red Sox's.Where culture was rich, it seared into the hearts of many young & old. The biggest obstacle to hurdle was what to do with an outdated & dilapidated  baseball park.The Millenium had passed without an Armageddon.Baseball Stadiums across the country were throwing wrecking balls & building state of art stadiums.These now were called Event Center's.Some were so big,hotels & restaurants could be built within the structure.The seats were designed for comfort.Wait staff can visit with more than your classic baseball frank. The roofs could roll over & off to prevent annoying rain delays & postponement.Outdoor Major League Baseball would be a distant memory in some markets.This is called progress.The city of Boston called  it Fenway Park since the early 1900's.Renovations have been dated back to 1933 & 1934 post fire damage.The renovations continued.In 1936 the famous Green Monster Wall was built.Builds continued in the 40's & every decade to follow. Fenway's history was & is  a vibrant colorful tattoo smack dap in the middle of its forehead.We'd learn through the years some wanted to remove this one kind piece of art.A plan had been thrown around to replace it with new designs,more seats just like the for mentioned above.The card holders around the table were new ownership,Historical Society's & The City of Boston to name a few.  Talking Points were,tearing down & rebuilding.The cities Infrastructure engineer's were called in.They explained the damage could bring problems to surrounding communities,bridges,pipes & the Mass Pike.Cost had been highlighted.It had been said.Its cost would be enormous.More  than it was worth.Some brought Land deals outside city limits.This was already decided a dead deal. The city officials prior to the Ball clubs 2002 transaction had only approved the deal with the promise of keeping the club in Boston.The deal meant huge tax revenues,tourists visits from in & out of state.One of the last & oldest ball club stadiums.It held value to Boston & the citizen's in communitiy The last group was a Historical Soceity.They were the  protectors of History & culture. The decisions were made.Band-aids,Braces & builds would be added...So since 2002 every off-season at Fenway Park has face lifts & additions.The biggest was just before the 2003 season which added seats above the Green Monster.The ownership promoted from with-in the club a new General Manager.The plan was to win a World Series title.A stranger to the club for 86 years.The team also got a new skipper. It all happened so quickly.Fans & media forgot quickly about the  billionaire Mogul's.The Legacy of winning 2 World Series after a drought of  86 year's won't ever be forgotten.The fans & media suspected & first reported back in 2002 & now post these titles,was showing the owners were more interested with the product, as a attraction & not a Cities old time Great Baseball Club.

So here it is.What led up to this? How did I become entangled & wrapped up?  The evidence stacked up. Its been getting worse since 2008 but had really began in 2002. Player relation problems year after year continue to decline.Players leaving bitter.Contracts not re-signed.The team seem to be plagued with more & more Injuries.Questions followed about the conditioning staff & warm-up plans.The medical personnel were also be questioned.The players were starting to ignore & mis-trust  clubhouse doctor's.Some players started seeking first,second opinions of Doctor's outside the club with little if any recommendations from the club.The consultations usually needed travel time.This didn't sit well with anyone.
The owners had taken on other investments in 2007 & 2010.They involved,A Racing Group & The famous Liver Pool Football Club & These were now just some of the obvious distractions that had brought unfocused attention away from Boston's beloved past-time.Things were not getting better.Clubhouse tempers & rumors flared.Large contracts given without a decent return.The new but now 10 year seasoned General Manager seemed troubled & eventually interviewed with another struggling Ball Club.The biggest thing to date is.Where's a winning focus to this premier sport's team?A Baseball team.This is not just about a team.Its a following.A community.Boston has always been a Baseball city. I imagine.A cartoon drawn with shirts & ties sitting around the boardroom table.Their  discussing the balance sheets concerning the  replica bricks & whats the best,biggest billboard to go up & where's it going.Ticket prices had also taken a huge increase.The  winning factor  is part of the experience but there wasn't any winning.Only excuses.Fans  had come to enjoy the players in 2002-2007.The feeling was each player was real & wanted to win. We'd think.The owners would want the same..Those plans had been changing for years leading up to this.Entering the 2012 season.The Circus tent still had been folded up.These owners appear patiently waiting for just the right moment to hoist and raise it up.The General Manager was a baseball kid.He loved stats with proven results. Years of failing & limited with decisions now.It looked like he was no longer making the calls for club. No one know's when & never will know when he began interviewing with plans of a fast break. Reports started to come out of the job interview. He would be ordered to continue  to mentor his under study that had already been with the club.The position would filled again form with-in. The owners had another in-house member to promote to take over as General Manager.The GM would have limited power.That's what this move said,to Red Sox Nation & the media.This became topic on all Sports Radio shows.This market had seen a huge uptake since the turn of the 2000's.They were the cannons fans were given to shoot  off about how truly disappointed they had become since the 2007 season.
2011-2012 off season continued to bring a dark shadow on top of the worst finishing loosing streak the Red Sox had experienced in years. Fingers & blame started.Next to follow was the termination of the beloved skipper.Who had lead the team for the last 8 seasons with 
being the only baseball team to achieve 2 championship in the millennium. Poor player relations continued as was the reputation of the club & they had a leak. Reports of drinking & indulging in unhealthy foods instead of working out & prep.The X-box was the center of attention to some.All this had been going on past & present.All of this was planned conveniently around what turned into the firing of a Fan favorite Manger.The termination was official.The following weeks turned up Vicious rumors,sound bites on & off record made allegations of a doped up pain pill popping manager.The manager had been pushed out.Redsox nation couldn't be more upset.The personal challenges with family,internal disrespect in the clubhouse by some & the reputation ending rumors.That was it.So the chapter looked like a dysfunctional family,back stabbing,comments about money & negative opinions were flying in & out of the clubhouse.The club now had a new General Manager.He is/was seen as middle man.This wasn't a guy left to make decisions.When a new Manager had been hired more for his entertainment factor then being a possible baseball leader.All the pieces were in place.This year wouldn't be focused on winning. 

In 2002 new ownership took the reigns.The line-up was nothing to be upset about .The  names like Ramirez,Garrciparra,Damon & even the Great HOF base stealer Rickey Henderson were playing for the club.The plate was covered by a young tough battery & named Team Captain. Jason Varitek was a natural born leader.He was catching pitchers  Pedro Martinez & Derek Lowe How could they not win? They finished with 93 wins in the regular season.They missed the post season.

As the 2003 season came upon the Red Sox .It rolled in like a thunder cloud.The Epstein era was here. Theo Epstein was young from an ivy league School.He was hired from with-in & pre 2003 season.This was included with controversy. He became the youngest GM in the Majors.He also was a Hometown hero with a Love for Baseball.He had an idea still new to baseball.Stats,charts & measurements with a good scouting staff would be the plan to hopefully catapult the Red Sox to victory. In 2003 he added to an already great line-up which  lead to the 93 wins in 2002. David Ortiz,Kevin Milliar & Curt Schilling all added to the club.These players would have a crucial influence in the Clubhouse  & on the field.The pieces were coming together.A huge campaign was being constructed from bottom up.This was marketed like a Presidential run.Sports networks were signed with exclusive rights.Interviews were scheduled on a regular time each week.The  "We Believe" campaign had taken over. This ended in a tragic defeat against the New York Yankees in the ACLS. 

We all dreamed of a time where we could wear our RedSox hats,Jackets & decals with more than just a die-hard fan reputation & hope approach.This thinking,had been done for  the past 86 years.Grandfathers had come & gone without seeing there beloved Red Sox Win a World Series.They had been use to the old saying "Maybe Next Year"This year would be different like so many others or would it ? It least we hoped.
In the 2004 off season. Boston's new "Boy Wonder" Theo Epstein had been more than seasoned.Prior to the position as GM.Theo had been involved with the front office.He followed not far behind Dan Duquette. Dan's wins were signings of Tim Wakefield,Manny Ramirez & Pedro Martinez.John Henry released him as of the 2002-2003 off-season.Theo with Company hired Terry Francona to take over for the failed Grady Little.Terry's resume consisted of Retired player,Coach & some front office work positions.He also came with  limited experience as a skipper.He had spent just three years with Phillies Org. They released him in 2000.These all came with challenges for Terry. He came in on a time where hopes,dreams & faith were just a bit higher than in previous seasons.Defeat from the previous campaign wasn't forgotten.It had been forgiven though.The 2004 season seemed special.It could be what dreams are made of & something no one could ever imagine.
This season's campaign brought on just one word "Faith"This was used to over power a usual Fenway frenzy feeling of  nausea.That a RedSox die hard fan had whenever Management brought in a new Man.This was a 86 year old championship drought. What was a guy like Terry Francona gonna do?Our hopes relied on only this.The Red Sox had made it to the Game before the Game the year before.The Sports Radio caller 1 after another replayed the scene.Along with all of  New York,Boone Family & any true baseball fan.This was a big show many times over reliving the previous years match up. Ticket prices beyond the common man & T.V. ratings that made advertising Sales Reps rich.The event ever so clear. The classic story.The non-fiction which  rests in the Best of Baseball's Walk-offs on DVD sets.The fan stories can reach in several directions with their own truth & fantasy.I know. I have mine.The  surrounding environment of where you were when,the recent retired knuckle-Ball er & Legend,Tim Wakefield  threw a meatball in the 11th inning to Aaron Boone to end Boston's right of the Championship.The walk off was the end of a another historical battle for our Millennium Sports Age.This was not the war though.Yankee's,Fan's,Media &  the mediocore player that hit the home run.Just 1 swing.This dramatic event was live on the T.V.  A voiceless Brett Boone the brother of  Aaron who just went down as an all time hero in New York & Fans all around the globe.Not to mention.The most recent upset to a season that looked really like"The One" for the Red Sox & deserving fans of  the Boston Red Sox & the fans.Who also spanned the the globe.The usual excuses persisted.The pundits made analyzing comments day in day out.The off season wouldn't be an off season if you didn't hear about the book & Urban legend in Boston. "The Curse of Bambino"written by "Shaughnessy" Is one version.This story displays why its been an 86 year old Urban Legend,title drought & haunting all having to do with the Red Sox & one the only last originally standing ballparks that surround them..The plot is, no more than trading away a Baseball Legend. named George Herman Ruth Jr. "The Great Babe Ruth".
Since,then no title 

My memories in 2003 are still fresh. The bar T.V. displaying the Yankee's in celebration & dead air space on the T.V & the bar.This silence lasted what seemed to be minutes but was only seconds. Where otherwise who'd hear sports commentary & bar noise.It was silent.It was priceless to me. Even more due to the fact.I recalled.That one of the men calling the game couldn't have been in a more celebrating,ego crushing position. Brett Boone's career  was nothing that deserved a H.O.F ballot. Not much more could be mentioned of his younger brother,who just became a Yankee Legend.There credit to being in the Majors was recognized.Brett Boone seemed be tied with others on the Steroid era.Jose Canseco decided that revealing Brett & many other great names in baseball was in his best interest.Rumors would even bring up player's names not mentioned.Unforunetly, Aaron's was no different. My fan story is unique to me but similar to most.Walking over a threshold of a local establishment.The Fish Company at the time, located just right off of the old Point St bridge in The Providence of Rhode Island,I remember the whole event like yesterday.I could had done without the car trip.I'd felt for many years the best ticket for the show, besides being there.Is the T.V..minus it "Raining"Nothing worse than being damp at Fenway.Especially,the games in extra innings.That night, I was outnumbered & named designated driver.What else was new?When we left.The score had become tied. I drove focused on our destination.My thought's wandered similar to my school age Christmas fantasy'sThoughts of anticipation &  joy on what Santa had brought to my sister & I the next morning under the tree.A child's mindful magical event.
A win.A World Series Win for the Boston Red Sox was responsible for that type of feelingin me.I hadn't care in the World.The hallucinations brought pleasure.The trip brought a mix of friends & fans ahead & behind.The never say die, Red Sox fans & the Yankee fans piled in together.Then it happened.Those Yankee fans transformed into members of a Lodge with the old men & funny hats,singing & chanting in celebration like they all had known each other for years.This was not the case.Believe me.My Attention Disorder kicked in.The old phrase. "Oh well" had come over me as fast as the hallucination state I was in just minutes before while driving a bunch of drunks down the highway. The views around me became a hilarious scene.One of those moments when you wish you had a video camera or had invented the Smart Phone already with the Video capture as part of the phone.The intoxicated around me.The best for a good laugh. These were not the New York fans.These were the defeated fans. Some pushed their way out of the bar,some Cried,Laughed. The sloppy,angry group could be segregated quickly.They made attempts of trash can overturning.These cans were mingled around the bar & filled with the usual.That activity was haulted quickly with the not so far resident bouncers & twin like colleauges on watch. I don't remember much after that.

The 2003-2004 season had excitement not only for Red Sox Nation.The neighboring Team nation to the South had also been Celebrating.Their results ended with a story book ending.This fabulous story brought together by the Kraft family & company.They had acheived a new team Logo,uniforms & renovations to their Football Stadium located in Foxboro Ma.The stadium sits along the North side of Route 1.This route is the first pioneering routes traveled in our countries history since the colonial days. It stretches from  Maine,Canada border down the East coast to Florida.The people within the organization.Showed involvment  & a knowlege of desire.This was to win.They did this with a second string Quarterback,a no non-sense attitude,discipline & a coaching staff  to bring it all together.All the ingredient's were there. The Ownership,Coaching & players were all involved.That lead to a mutual respect  on the team and a standing of New England fans they hadn't been around for a long time.The Patriot's had 3 Super Bowl Championships in 2001,2003 & 2004.The hero was Tom Brady & team.Tom was the story.He rocked all of New England & the NFL. The story.So perfect. A Starting,struggling quarterback.Drew Bledsoe side-lined & Tom went in.The rest is history.The fortune of fan-fair didn't run short & rides still on the coat tales of their new Young GQ hollywood like quarterback star,Tom Brady.
The years brought New England's  four professional teams within the Region to it's ups & down seasons.No other was like the Boston Red Sox loosing streak & no other was like the honorable New England Patriots.Who had started a legacy leading to 3 titles in four years. 

So the 2004 season hit like a virus.Red Sox fever was catchy & sickened all that came near.As far as the Red Sox fan was concerned 2004 was the year to go down dying or be cured from an 86 year old illness & brake a tall tail curse.The short term alixure was mixed with the new shiny title sitting with-in the Patriots front office.This was enough to forgive the drought ridden Red Sox. Individuals like,Mark Bellhorn & Dave Robert's didn't seem to lift many hopes of a supposed to be Championship ending. We still rode hopes on an All-Star pitching staff. Lowe,Arroyo,Martinez & Keith Foulke the closer.Offense was an opponent's nightmare.They faced a slowing Nomar but faced a home run hitting Manny Ramirez,David Ortiz & others all with batting averages in the .300's.April ended with a decent record.The Red Sox did struggle mid-season.All-star break approached & proved to be challenging & changing with-in the Red Sox clubhouse.A change with the famous batting glove fanatic & icon Nomar Garrciparra. The bags were packed & soon came the new.He left for Chicago to join the club. Frantic fan's were always this way post any big move.This was a big move.
The nation was unsure of this dealing & those to follow.Deals like this & others in past years  seem to leave a bad taste in your mouth.The one you get after sleeping.It wasn't pleasant or new.Theo brought in some new names.They were involved with multiple moves.Acquiring a young Orlando Cabrera.Orlando was part of the multi team deal involving Nomar, and the veteran Doug Mientkiewicz from the Twins, & in a separate deal Dave Roberts joined the club.Some of Dave Robert's past had him at the top 3rd & 4th places with stolen bases. This ability stat could of never been expected to be much value as it had become stale & most fans & pundits new he was past his prime. Roberts had already spent 7 years in the Majors & Minors.Dave's energy became infectious in the clubhouse. .Dave fit like a glove with his new teammates.The fever spread quickly with him & others that joined along. Mark Bellhorn came aboard the Fenway train in 2004.The plan was to use him as a utility player that was until injury plagued Nomar & Pokey Reese. Bellhorn had piled on the years in the Majors similar to Robert's.Mark did bring along his own stat's & talents though.While with the Cubs he achieved to become the first to Homer from both sides of the plate in the same inning.The pinnacle of his career prior to the Red Sox was when he hit 27 homeruns with the Cubs.Chicago's first switch hitter to do so.Mark then spent some time in the Rockies mid season 2003.The thin air wasn't a benefit to Bellhorn.He finished with embarrassing numbers.2004 came with another new uniform.A uniform of significance that a player like Bellhorn was meant for & needed for a career at best was dismal.

So here it was,162 games approaching.The 2004 summer season was coming to an end.TI think for me how it all  began.The highlight of my first.The first 2004 Opening Day game at Fenway Park. This was special to me.It was also my first game attending with my irish twin brother.We had been separated as toddlers.Our reuniting took place years prior to this event.This was to me just one more or less times I had with him to make up for times lost. Every moment leads me to find out our similes & recognize differences.These at times were so different.How could anyone place us as being brothers only 15months apart. I'd come to learn.He had never forgot me.Days & nights passed under the same sky.Our eyes gazed upon the same star's.Wondering about each other.He becoming the Huckleberry Finn boy.Playing with other boys in his peer group & getting into trouble causing havoc eveywhere they went. I only new at the time.Things were different with me.I was attached to my mothers hip & had a baby sister. He had troubling thoughts,a mother & older brother who discounted him & his thoughts on every word.He'd  tell me of stories,of fishing,fighting & swimming in leach infested waters.Drugging,Drinking & early sexual experiences.He recalled trouble with police as a rebellious teenage & then being ordered into Military Service.Then followed by a dismissal due to our father's sudden death. Stories were told to me similar like the tabloid papers.Never knowing what to believe or not to.As years passed.I began truly to understand.My brothers stories were true even as strange as the plot was.I always & stilll am to this day curious to hear of it all.I trailed off many interesting questions over the years about Our father,Mother & an older brother.He never has been too informing about Aunt's,Uncle's & cousin's on our father's side.Our older brother was pinned the "Mail mans kid solely being opposite of looks & demeanor from us both.I would never get to meet my father.He had passed 2 years prior post suffering a massive Cardiac arrest.Since, I discovered a loving man.A man who labored & worked hard with what was given & taken of him. My reunion showed over the years real differences from a family I had been born into but destined to be someone else & part of something else.It always had made sense  & it  would have to.These were things made to be seen.It all happened just right way because it did.
 My mother was & still is a strong determined woman.I remember when she fit my newly born baby smelling sister in my lap or laying next to me while we both drifted off to sleep.We had fit just right. Our mum had many struggles in her own past. She too, was swept away from a family.A bitter,ugly & unheard divorce of the time. A  father & 2 rowdy brothers.She was gathered away from family that she cleary could not be mistaken as not being a part of them.The looks & traits were so familiar.
There was no mistaking them. The new beginning & future events she encountered were life changing.At a young age,she experienced near death after being struck by an automobile.She was revived & survived the ordeal.She suffered pain & recovered over several months.It followed by years of reconditioning therapy physically,emotionally & on top of it all getting use to  a new father figure & now having to be the oldest sibling in her new family.The years continued with hardships.She had become advanced with physical maturity among her peers.There also had been possible sexual abuse allegations with-in her new family.This all,must of been very challenging.

My life had now transformed with the majority of it in a Hospital & now I had to face the outside world. I stood no more than 3 feet tall.I was slightly under weight for my birth age.I could barely walk or eat. I remember wondering, what it was all about.I had left the only place.I knew.I couldn't remember whether I had others.I had short hazey memories of something.My conscious awareness mostly were filled with nurses,doctors,A movie man named Bob & other characters. I had been sat with many times.Strolled around.I was popular within the confines of the facility.
I battled with my new mother.While she yelled,cried & forced food down my throat.She always worked hard with me.I was her new toddler. I often think.In today's standard's.My adopting parent's were to young & the Social Service personnel would of never approved my adoption. Over the years,curiosity had always made me wonder.Who was insane? The Social Service worker or my new parents.Come to find out.A little of both. My new parents soon became singular to parent.Our mother took it all on herself. She was now a single parent with a sick toddler & baby.We both needed full-time care.This brought about many hardships & instances of turmoil.This shouldn't be a surprise.She had some out of the ordinary obligations.The three of us grew together.She raised us close together.That baby would become a twin like sibling & truly my best friend.There were not many places we went without our mother.When we did. My younger sister & I didn't leave each others side. We went on summer vacations alone to Florida together. I can remember several times over the years holding hands together in an airport readying what seemed a long walk down the ramp to an awaiting airplane entrance door.It'd  fly us right into our grandparents arms. The climate  always felt different upon exiting the plane. Our return from the summer & destination always were given away by our bronzed skin.The palm tree's were another favorite thing of mine. We also were frightened while we were together.When we had to listen in bed as the adult's argued.We didn't go together.We belonged together.We were brother & sister.

These thoughts are only some of my personal chronicles.They each lead to a different outcome.This outcome lead me now up on the newly renovated Right upper lounge section of Fenway Park during the 2004 season opener.This time.I was together with my brother. I still after 3 years barely knew him.The one thing I new he'd now never leave me again.It least.I hoped not.The last 12 hours prior to the game.I had lined up along Landsdowne St. I was waiting to purchase my due amount of tickets to an Opener that would go down as one of my best memories of all time as far as adventures & the my Red Sox experience goes.
Other Red Sox fans were there standing,sleeping & mingling with their groups in the same line.No matter how interesting or uninteresting all of our stories were. We got there.They were our stories. Each of us arrived at that moment,place & time.Different rumors traveled through the line on the limited number of tickets available for purchase per buyer .Would there be a bracelet given?Would your place in line be like a deal signed with the devil.Step out & always regret it until the day you die. No body knew what day break would bring. As the hours slowy came.I had been thinking again about tickets.My plan was to purchase as many tickets as allowed with the money in my pocket.I'd sell all but 2 & get the amount of money back I had come with & try making a few extra bucks.I hoped the day would turn out to be free.This was how my scheme played out in my mind. I reached for the cash.I had brought. It wasn't there.I knew. I had brought it to Boston.I had counted it in my car. 
My nerves had the best of me.I  knew.It was in the car.I had parked around the block.Close enough to get out quick not close enough to step out of line though.It wasn't  day break yet.I realized waiting much more.A fast break would be impossible.I ran to my car to find all the money within the rest of my wallets contents. I had planned only holding my I.D. & money in my cargo pockets.This was some of my planning.I figured this for security reasons if I possibly drifted off to sleep.I returned & managed a breakfast filler sandwich from Mcdonald's to ease my empty stomach.I easily stepped back in to place.My neighbors smiled at me.Most of them were in small groups.They took turns with sending scavengers to walk in search of food & drink.It was like watching a movie of ship wrecked survivors.Never knowing whether they'd return from their expedition & if they did.What would they had found & who hadn't made it back.
We all spoke in the line.We all had figured as the hours approached closer to the first day break.The line would grow.The cities noises would get louder ,light would creep slowly around the cracks & crevices.The line did grow.It went up around the building to Yawkey Way.It was a bright sunny morning.It brought business around the Park.Most were not here to see the Red Sox.Police Cruiser,Ambulance & Waste Management,The biggest increase was the Vendors.They kept arriving with all the concessions that made up a legendary,magical place called Fenway Park.My thinking led to disappointment for those around the building further back than I was.My Humility had sunk to my feet.I shouldn't feel bad.Why?  Should I.They hadn't bundled up,they hadn't planned on sleeping or drifting off on the sidewalk with bag or tent. The 10am hour approached. Fenway Park officials gathered.One spoke loudly,to every 25 to 30 lined up.The man walked from beginning to end yelling & repeating the same information. He followed the line right around the building until he couldn't be heard or seen by those on the Landsdowne St. He explained bracelets would be issued only to first head count starting at the 200th person in line.The count began.This came shortly after the return of the information yelling official.It was my turn.I shouted 60. 
I watched the numbers climb up to me & surpass me while hearing people yell out.They went up & up through each smile.The guarantee would it least get 1 ticket.I was sure of that. I then came to find out while in line 8 had been promised to the first 200.More would be determined after the first 200 with bracelet's.It was a cash transaction only.By 1130am the line began moving.Before,I knew it. I was standing in front of the ticket window.It was like i was accepting a million dollars from a bank teller. It least. i imagined this is what it must feel  like.When receiving such an amount.The reality of the event was like a dream.An  awesome memorable dream.I got my 8 tickets with cash to spare.Shortly, after receiving the tickets.I'll admit.I was a bit cautious to on-lookers.I was all of 130lbs & in my hand was what was the hottest ticket right there and now.I was surprised it didn't take long to be approached.The couple bought 2 of them.I gained 5 dollars extra off of each the ticket.The transaction was quick.I now had 6 left.I'd keep 2 for my brother & I.The last 4. I'd continue to try to peddle them.This plan was full proof. I had thought about this for days leading up to this exact time.
I walked & wandered along Brookline Ave & not far from the confines of Yawkey Way.I was free from the line so it was easily seen.That not everyone would be getting in today.As I continued people watching,observing suttle hints of selling & trading by others.
I was standing to the right of the landing outside of Boston Beer works across from Cask in Flaggin.I could see down Yawkey Way getting busier with each passing minute/I looked down.Then up.All around I was in a mix of people all with different events leading to this location.Then suddenly , a middle age man approached.He asked,if i was selling.I figured 2 more out of the way.No,after him asking again & me repeating to reassure him.I spoke up & replied.I had four .He wanted all 4.He began speaking to others in his group.They were near by.They all seemed to agree with purchasing my four.The transaction was swift.As a final 10 dollar bill was exchanged amongst my new founded friend.A man dressed similar to my buyer & most of the people around stepped up.The man with his right hand pulled a chain out from under his golf shirt.It was a gold bright badge of athority.I looked at the man slightly stunned.I quickly gained my wits.I stared at the buyer.Who also had a "deer in headlights look to him"I replied to him"Thanks for the change.The badged man looked at me again.This time he spoke."Whats going on here"?The buyer now had walked off lost in the crowd.I replied,simply by saying,"I needed change.The badge was placed back under the shirt.The figure disappeared faster than he appeared in the ever growing swarm of people.My heart slowly started out of the tachy cardiac rate it had gone into.I ran back to the car.I had roughly 30 dollars more with me than I had brought.That evening on the way.I told my brother of the events leading to our free & first Fenway Park Opening Day event.This I knew.We both would cherish until our death. 

I didnt have much money.So the Fenway factor was far & few over the years.My season consisted usually of two or three games a year.I'd go one of several ways.I'd be someone's guest or tickets would be given as a  gift .I also believed & lived on miracles.

August came & the Red Sox had clinched the Wild Card."The post season had arrived.The Los Angeles Angels, & at the time named the Anaheim Angels was the opponent. The Red Sox approached the series like putting together ever so carefully a model ship inside a bottle. They swept the west coast team sending them off with a fond farewell.While they  made examples of the Angels.The Yankee's would do the same to the Minnesota Twins.The Bronx bombers finished with over 100 wins that season.They beat the Twins 3 games to 1.So both teams were returning to The American League Championship Series with glory & hopes to go to the 2004 World Series.The first 2 games were played in New York.
Both teams proved themselves with respectable hits.Yankee's captured the wins in games 1 & 2.Game 3 was the biggest loss by Boston. It also became the only post game with that many hits.The Red Sox were down  3 games to none.No team had ever come back with a 3 game deficit.In fact only 2 teams were noted to making a comeback but lost Game 6.I had receive tickets as a gift.These tickets were good for The American League Championship Game 4 at Fenway Park.I still believed of what seemed to be another crushing blow by the Yankee's.The Park looked beyond capacity.I gathered myself anywhere there was a view.The game begun to go into the late hours of the night.All players from both sides battled.Inside the Park,the noise,excitement & feelings were beyond anything explainable.You'd have to of been there.The12th inning rolled in with Ortiz at bat.This all was possible by the Yankee's Closer & the Baseball Great Mariano Rivera.The Yankee's leading into the bottom of the ninth.Millar stepped up to the plate.Mariano let control & I imagine pressure get to him.Kevin Millar had the walk.Terry had called in a Pinch runner.It would be Dave Roberts.The same Dave Robert's who put up career highs in base stealing in his prime. Robert's promptly got to work & took off.It seemed to happen so quickly.Everyone roared,he had done it. He now was on second.He stood & clapped his gloved hands. This enabled the Red Sox to score on a RBI single hit by another unsung hero Bill Mueller.The game now was tied & carried on until all eyes were on Ortiz in the bottom of the 12th.Everyone was standing,cheering.I heard the hit,I saw the ball.It was a line drive no more than 20 to 30 feet high.It soared fair.Past Pesky pole & shooting over & out of the field of play over the lowest partitioned section from field to fan.The ball landed between the seats & the visitors bullpen.It flew like it had been aimed by a marksman Archer.The park erupted.Players ran on to the field in celebration.They all were waiting for Ortiz at the plate. The sight was unbelievable.Relishing in the drug called the Red Sox.I decided to run my way out of there.I had parked at the Boston Children's Hospital garage. The precious Citgo sign always seemed so close from the top floor of Children's.This is where most of my time was spent as a teenager.The sign stood strong,bright in the backdrop of Fenway & the joining Kenmore Square below.I had wanted get home.The re-watch value on T.V. was priceless to me.I knew the highlights would be going on all night. I ran faster than Charlie Bucket with a "Golden Ticket.My adrenaline was pumping so hard.I think.I  flew in the air down 20 stairs along Van-Ness St.I did reach my car.I did go to sleep.I did keep my ticket stub.The 2004 Boston Red Sox did something that never had been done.They had comeback & won from a deficit no team had done this.It was bitter sweet.The beaten Yankee's couldn't believe it .They had lost. & even been the outcome of a never before seen feat.Boston achieved the impossible.They went on to sweep the St. Louis Cardnialsin the World Series.The Boston Red Sox had become 2004 World Series Champions.The curse was broken,The 86 years had now been seen as time well deserved.The thristy drank.The hungry ate & all was good in Red Sox Nation.

The 2005 season brought the Red Sox & Yankee's to a tie in the regular season standings.The Yankee's did achieve a hard fought regular season series.They had beeaten out the Red Sox & finished on top of division.Boston had captured the Wildcard.They were finished quickly  by  a 3 game sweep by the Chicago White Sox in the following Series.Chicago won the American League Championship. Next came the broom in the 2005 World Series. Houston held there heads in shame. As some were celebrating,others were negotiating.The transactions & drafts were stronger than ever.Names signed Jacoby Ellsbury,Clay Buchholz  & a Veteran of the Majors.John Olerud had been signed to a minor league deal.He had been recovering from surgery post 2004 season. He was added to the 25 man roster.John retired at the end of 2005.The Red Sox had ended there season.What hadn't ended was the odd things in the Red Sox board room.Post 2005 season a dilemma had hit Ownership that caught everyones attention.

I had been told of an old time story.It concerned a creature.The type of tale that'd scare mustard off a Fenway Frank.It was October 31,2005,windy,Crisp maple leaves were covering the abandoned streets,They crunched under your feet with each shuffling step.
It was quiet.All had gone home,packed up,some waited to hear if they'd return to the great coloseum.A structure.That been home to the greats,Ted Williams,Jim Rice and chjaractersn like Bill Lee.A place where an Iron Pole was named Pesky.This night was different while history lay in the shadows. Something was lurcking on Yawkey Way,Landsdowne & VanNESS.This was the same block that had been released from an 86 year old hex.The  moon was especially bright this night.Stars could be counted forever.Goblins,monsters everyhere.Jack on every corner glowing. Then it appeared from around the corner.It had try to remain hidden so not to be seen.It's speed was faster than anyone new it could travel.There it was.It could hide no more.Those that could see it were amazed.It must have been fascinated with bright lights.Then it happen.The traffic light went from Red to Green.It took off in bullet fashion.The Gorilla in the Volvo was never seen again.

 The winter was cold.The birds were in the oven,Potato's were mashed & the 2003 World Series MVP Josh Beckett was the newest member of the Redsox.The Marlins also had an  elite third baseman in the league. In his tenure with the Marlins, he had become a three time All-Star and won a Silver Slugger and Gold Glove.Mike Lowell was surely to become someone that Boston admired with respect for his humility & the will to play hard.The cold weather brought a chill down the spine of Red Sox Nation.The headlines couldn't be worse.Johnny Damon was gone.This had hit Boston hard below the belt.The owners once again were in the spotlight. The questions were to much.They couldn't answer for the issues that had haunted them.The loss of Damon,the refusal of Theo Epstein to accept a new deal.Distractions were thrown by a funny baseball youngster with speed & a run of sub par  numbers in two seasons with Cleveland, that was enough for the Red Sox .Crisp was a hope  to replace the beloved long hair Johnny Damon. Spring was the game.Those that played it were strangers with one goal.To win.The hard playing Kevin Youkillis was assigned to first base & led the club with the most bruises when came in result of hit by a pitch.Those around him became to understand this was something special.The Red Sox finished with 86 wins.Third place is where you could find Boston with a season plagued with excuse,injury & personal challenge of one of there own.The young starter Jon Lester would be diagnosed with Lymphoma not knowing what the future may hold.Loosing wasn't an option for Jon.He had proven that by returning in 2007 with a performance that no one, not even Lester could of dreamed of. 

The Red Sox first World Series win.Still lingered.Stomach's were filled,Hunger had been beaten.Yes,the Sox nation saw how foolish the owners were.These men had play contract games since 2002.There wallets at a time of economical question to most were full.They settled with there GM.They had even promoted him to multi-rolls within the organization.This must of been to have the key to the gold.In 2007 the management decided money was not an issue when Daisuke Matsuzaka a Japanese starting pitcher approved the Red Sox to bid for his interview.The deal would awaken even the fat fans who were still singing "Sweet Caroline"from 2004.This had the fans & media confused.The pitching rotation included Curt Schilling,Josh Beckett,The Survivor,Jon Lester & the knuckleballer Tim Wakefield.The minor leagues had even given reports to scouts that a long dankly framed kid pitcher was performing  at a Major League Level.The deal had been completed.Pedro Martinez was going to the Mets.This did not sit well with those watching.This started phones ringing.Now things again were questioned.Everyone new gambling on a prospect was risky.Summer rolled by & facing the Angels in August was never easy.The offense proved to win the game.The rate of adrenaline was high.Clay Buchholz had never been in the Majors until now.The following days Clay had returned to the minors,on interview,he said"It was a start"referencing about his first start.Clay couldn't have been more correct.He found himself being blinded by flash,the crowd around his locker was a wall of energy with questions.When asked,about his thoughts on being the first Red Sox Rookie pitcher to throw a no hitter in only his second game.He responded."It was all a blur"The Red Sox would go on to offer Clay an extension worth 30million dollars 4 years after his first major league start.This was even when reports had that Buchholz had already thrown out his arm.He was taken off the roster prior to the post-season.The mound wasn't the only talk of the town.The 2007 rookie of the year laid his head with Legends.A small second baseman,a hard noise player,a player that would become an advocate of a skipper who he respected.Dustin Pedroia was ready to win cribbage against his Manager Terry Francona.He also showed a small stature means nothing with heart.Dustin proved 2007 was his year.The Red Sox were first to clinch for a playoff spot & captured the  American League East title which hadn't been done since 1995. The 2007 post season had brought millions of dollars worth of contracts.One such received by J.D. Drew drew received criticism because J.D. was
laid back & injury prone. All signatures were signed.It was a 5year 70million dollar contract until 2011.The opinion never changed about Drew.This even after hitting a grand slam in the 2007 American League Championship Series.Boston would not miss Drew as he snuck out the back door to finish out his career & go home to be the same J.D. he always was.
The mile high city was the home of the Colorado Rockies.It was also who the Red Sox faced in there second appearance & the only Major League team to end up being the first to win  two titles with-in the decade.This Rockies were no match for the Red Sox.The offense even without Manny was loving the thin air.The baseballs flew,the field work errorless & it was an effort deserved by all.Boston swept Colorado. Boston was once again holding there head high & noses even higher.The title was no longer a stranger to the Red Sox.It just had to be worked for.The 2007 World Series Champions the Boston Red Sox did exactly that. 


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