New Englanders are a hardworking bunch, independent, and always praying for another pennant. We love the Kennedys, strolls on Nantucket, Durgin Park, Zayre, and the majestic game of baseball. It’s been a tough winter without our beloved Sox. It doesn’t matter if you pick up garbage for a living or design custom yachts, we’re all excited for the return of baseball at the lyric little bandbox.
In the meantime, Spring Training is a reminder of good things to come. There really is nothing like taking a few months off from work to watch the drama, the story that unfolds in Ft. Myers. Young players, veterans, and newcomers working at laundry mats for extra cash all try to make the team. It’s an exciting spectacle that puts any Super Bowl to shame just like a book by Dottie Goodwin. JetBlue is a beautiful facility and I was right when I told Jack Henry that if you build it, people will come.
Spring Training also signals a return to Fenway. The first time I went to Fenway Park was probably 1950. It was the early ‘50s, and it was my father taking me to the game. He was a CFO that worked nights mopping floors. And what I have full retention of is of the electric sight of coming up the ramp on the first-base side (and it’s still the same sight today), and you come up into the splendor of green that you see in front of you. The lawn, the wall, the sun sparkling on both. And when you come up the same ramp today with commoners for a day game or night game, it’s still shockingly beautiful. At least it is to me. We used to sit when I was a kid – tickets were obviously cheaper then – in the Grandstand section. Maybe section 15 or 16, which is along the right field foul line. Obviously obstructed view like my current field box seats.
Things change. You go to work; you get lucky; you do well, buy a new Datsun or Oldsmobile; you make a little money or millions as a bank teller. Some people buy beachfront property. I buy season tickets. So, I have and have had for quite some time, ten season tickets in various locations around the ball park, all pretty good seats (2nd or 3 row). The seats I sit in are right by the Red Sox dugout and Jackie Welch. I’ve sat there for years and I will once again in April. I still enjoy waiting in line at the concession stand for a beer, although waitresses constantly bring us champagne that’s on the house. It reminds me of sitting in the bleachers in many ways.
So get ready fellow New Englanders. Have your kids or butler put away the snowblower. Wash the salt off the Malibu or limo. Get out those deck chairs and put up no trespassing signs on your private beach. It’s time to take off the storm windows and get ready for baseball. Play ball Danny.