Archive for November 2017

Memoirs of a Great Sports Rivalry

Winter is known to baseball fans as the time for the “hot stove league” – the time when fans get together to talk and debate the previous year’s events, trades, retirements, and transactions.  They also look forward with anticipation and wait impatiently for the start of spring training.  Fans from Boston and New York City are famous for the debates that take place when they come together to discuss what they expect from their team in the upcoming season.  Of course, competition between the Boston and New York baseball franchises has existed for more than a century now, and how many folks haven’t heard of the “Babe Ruth curse” that supposedly afflicted the Red Sox team for eons after their sale of Babe Ruth’s contract to the New York Yankees?

 

But don’t think this has only stretched one way from Boston to New York.  Numerous stars found themselves going to the friendlier confines of Fenway Park, instead of having to play in the cavern that was Yankee Stadium.   And athletes like Ted Williams, Johnny Pesky and David Ortiz enjoyed playing in Boston.  They made nearly every contest with the Yankees a memorable one, and fans with a real knowledge of the history of these two franchises could write a book about the events that took place both between the foul lines as well as behind the doors of the clubhouse.  It was well known that both franchises were among the most reluctant to field Black or minority athletes; this is ironic today when you see how many of their star athletes are minorities.  It is also ironic when you see how much of their fan base consists of minority supporters.

 

Baseball fans are noted for their loyalty to their favorite team; fans of the Brooklyn Dodgers were most noted for that trait.  The slogan “Wait ‘til next year!” became so famous you could hear it at any Walgreens drug store when fans came to pick up prescriptions or get something to bring home.  And loyal fans are the ones who will use Groupon coupons to save money when shopping there, just to save extra cash to buy a ticket to see their club play.  There is nothing that excites a true baseball fan more than the chance to see a great ball game like those Red Sox vs. Yankees contests of yore.