Life in a Baseball Town

Sox Puppet

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Dec 7, 2016
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Also, the tradition of yelling "YANKEES SUCK" -- when the Yankees aren't even in town -- just warms my heart
 

Sin Duda

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Jul 16, 2005
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(B)Austin Texas
Going to high school in Middletown CT (Xavier) in the 70s, equidistant from NY and Boston, the split was decidedly Red Sox. I recall shouting matches and even fisticuffs once over which team had the better lineup.

Ah-hey-ma-ma-ma
Dee-doo-din-nie-ya-ya
Ah-hey-ma-ma-ma
Hey-y-yah
Life in a baseball town (region)
 

jaytftwofive

lurker
Jan 20, 2013
987
Drexel Hill Pa.
Boston and The New England area, Providence, all the New England states and half of Connecticut has always been a great baseball area, and Red Sox country. Only St. Louis which is still the best baseball town and possibly Chicago are the only areas better then us. However like life things can change. When the Pats first won their first 3 Super Bowls, the Red Sox were still number one. It seemed after 2011 and the Valentine disaster is when things might have changed. 2013 was lightning in a bottle and I'll never forget it but the Pats just kept succeeding going to 8 straight AFC Title games. And of course the Deflate gate became us against them it seemed and the Pats of course won 3 more Super Bowls. The real proof was that night in October of 2018 when the Sox played the Astros in game 2 of the ALCS, and the Pats played the Chiefs at home. The Sox rallied to win and the Pats had to hold off a big rally by the Chiefs and won in OT. What disappointed me and kind of broke my heart was when the ratings came out, The Pats game outdrew a Red Sox PLAYOFF!!!! GAME. I never thought that would happen in Red Sox Country but like most of the U.S. Pro Football has become no. 1. Even in Red Sox country. Have you noticed the change from friends or family?? Do you feel the Pats have become no.1? Just curious. I'm not crazy about Dan Shaughnessy but his article about the Red Sox popularity dropping was right. I hope the Sox become no.1 again. Anyway great win. On to game 3!!
 

TonyPenaNeverJuiced

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Jun 7, 2015
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Very tempted to make a "Life During Wartime: Non-New England Sox Fans" thread. Growing up in NYC (heading past E. 161st every morning of high school), I thought I had a particular disdain for the enemy, and a certain pride that you blessed few who got NESN could never understand. My second fake ID** showed me there were other Sox fans living behind enemy lines. Moving out West, I quickly found a few like-minded heads in L.A. at Little Bar. While I don't frequent the joint anymore, I proudly wear my Sox gear about the city and–guaranteed–get a shout-out every time. So yeah, I feel a fit of jealousy about the prospect of pouring out into the streets and yelling about the Sox at the top of my lungs (or respectable decibels) each time there's a big victory and I can tell Boston is electric. Seeing the "olde towne" crowd light up, before during and after the game, is a real treat, especially from far away. At this point for me, a trip to Fenway is a rare, almost impossible to reach goal–but the times I have been are life highlights. Happily, I live vicariously through all you blessed few who get NESN.

* — pro tip: the door guy might be suspicious if you show up to a Boston bar wearing your high school baseball practice gear, flashing a Delaware ID. No amount of knowledge about Wilmington will help you.
 

grimshaw

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May 16, 2007
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These crowds remind me of 2003-4 when fans were starved for a championship and they felt like underdogs all the time. Maybe it's a recency bias thing, but I don't recall anything like what we've seen since then. The fans jumping up and down completely losing their shit after Schwarber's grand slam, chanting names other than Papi or Pedro, not just cheering every favorable pitch after the first few innings, but one through nine. That stuff happened during other runs, but it didn't seem as intense as it does now.

It's a very non-corporate crowd who don't just wait for runs being scored.
 
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RG33

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Nov 28, 2005
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It was really something else. The place was nuts from the get-go. I had 3 buddies from out-of-town that made the trip with me, and they were all like “this is unbelievable”. The crowd rising on a 2-strike pitch in the top of the 1st inning alone had them. It feels like all of this was so unexpected, and is a return-from-Covid gift from the baseball Gods. Fenway was special last night.
 

Lose Remerswaal

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1967 broke this kid's heart
1975 broke this teen's heart
1978 broke this college kid's heart
1986 broke this young adult's heart
2003 broke this old guy's heart

2004 cured 2003
2007 cured 1986
2013 cured 1978
2018 cured 1975

One to go and I will be HEALED.
 

luckysox

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Apr 21, 2009
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I wonder how much is a huge post-covid exhale. Baseball - at least for the fan who is fully vaxxed, or who does not care, and anyone there is in one of those two categories, is totally normal again (this was not a political statement). Very little else in life is still. Put it together with this suddenly explosive team and suddenly extremely likable team (and a metric butt-ton of alcohol) and you get this sort of Fenway crowd.
 

Batman Likes The Sox

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Dec 28, 2003
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As I watched the younger Sox fans during the game last night I thought about how the 21 year olds were toddlers in 03 and have really only ever known winning. A blessed generation.

Regardless of age or experience, there the crowds were after the game with their Affleck (you’re welcome) and their Papi and their ARod sucks.

May the hate never die. May we live to always see the need to cut audio for twenty seconds at a time when a Yankee stands in front of the crowd outside Fenway. Peace be with you.
 

IdiotKicker

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Nov 21, 2005
7,591
Somerville, MA
I wonder how much is a huge post-covid exhale. Baseball - at least for the fan who is fully vaxxed, or who does not care, and anyone there is in one of those two categories, is totally normal again (this was not a political statement). Very little else in life is still. Put it together with this suddenly explosive team and suddenly extremely likable team (and a metric butt-ton of alcohol) and you get this sort of Fenway crowd.
I think this is a huge part of it. And the last couple years have been rather quiet on the championship side too, as we’ve been spoiled for the last 2 decades. Cs haven’t made a finals, Bs had 2 short runs, Pats are…not good. So this is the only game in town sniffing a title since early 2019. Not a long time for most cities, but we’ve had a heck of a run.

I also think there are a lot of people (myself included) who haven’t watched much baseball the last couple years. And I got sucked back in during the last week of the season and now remember that when baseball is good, it’s a better sport than almost anything (playoff hockey still wins it for me). But the ability of this team to deliver for the last 2 weeks has made it such a good reminder of why baseball is such a good take. The tension, the pressure, the eventual release of it. It’s fantastic.
 

PortlandSoxFan

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Going to high school in Middletown CT (Xavier) in the 70s, equidistant from NY and Boston, the split was decidedly Red Sox. I recall shouting matches and even fisticuffs once over which team had the better lineup.

Ah-hey-ma-ma-ma
Dee-doo-din-nie-ya-ya
Ah-hey-ma-ma-ma
Hey-y-yah
Life in a baseball town (region)
Xavier '90 here.

I did not catch the post game, I was so excited it was 9-0 at 9:30 PM so I could go to bed as I was exhausted from going to the Pats game last night. And now my energy is renewed so I can hopefully be one of those drunken clowns celebrating during the postgame show while there tonight!
 

CPT Neuron

Got Pitching?
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Dec 4, 2001
2,978
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I do not think that I can do the atmosphere around the park justice. The Mrs. and I parked at Simmons College and walked across. We figured the 15-minute walk each direction would still be shorter than sitting in a parking garage closer to the stadium and trying to get out after the game, but I digress only a little. The reason I bring this up is that on the walk across there was a little heard of college-age students walking across in front of us, behind us, and around us, all decked-out in the current hip version of Red Sox jersey, the bright yellow 617 version, with all the new stars and numbers plastered across the back. We listened to their pure excitement of heading to the game, talking about who was going to go yard and how excited they were for the game itself. I have not seen an environment going into the ballpark like that in many years. The general "vibe" of the crowd itself was much younger and much more energetic. There did seem to be a striking lack of "corporate" quality to the ground. Everyone was on their feet from what seems like the first second of the game. The bleachers were absolutely insane, to the point where a young couple held up their infant, no more than 6 or 9 months, eliciting various chance of "we want baby", "baby", and, my favorite, "MVP" at which point the proud father held the baby over his head. It was really more of a Lion King Simba thing more than anything else, but the energy that this spoke of was something very reminiscent of 2003 in 2004. Of course the "PAPI" chants at the Fox stage and the combination of Affleck/A-Rod Sucks/Bennifer chants, and even a gratuitous Big Hurt chant was pretty funny. The "Fuck Altuve chant after Correa muffed the throw on the attempted steal was a bit off the mark, but all in all the crowd was dialed in last night!
 

NickEsasky

Please Hammer, Don't Hurt 'Em
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Jul 24, 2001
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I was in the RF Grandstand last night and my entire section stood for the entire game. Such amazing energy all night from the crowd. It just felt different from playoff games I attended in 2003 and 2004 but kind of similar to Game 1 of the WS in 2013. Very much a hey we're here let's enjoy the ride and give the team some energy. Everyone loves gravy.
 

nolasoxfan

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I think this is a huge part of it. And the last couple years have been rather quiet on the championship side too, as we’ve been spoiled for the last 2 decades. Cs haven’t made a finals, Bs had 2 short runs, Pats are…not good. So this is the only game in town sniffing a title since early 2019. Not a long time for most cities, but we’ve had a heck of a run.

I also think there are a lot of people (myself included) who haven’t watched much baseball the last couple years. And I got sucked back in during the last week of the season and now remember that when baseball is good, it’s a better sport than almost anything (playoff hockey still wins it for me). But the ability of this team to deliver for the last 2 weeks has made it such a good reminder of why baseball is such a good take. The tension, the pressure, the eventual release of it. It’s fantastic.
Co-sign this and the @luckysox post. I found myself humming, “There’s something happening here, what it is ain’t exactly clear…” after shutting off the TV and heading to bed last night. I’ll take my thoughts over to V&N if and when I’m able to collect them. But for now, I am going to enjoy the hell out of this incredible run.
 

Jim Ed Rice in HOF

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Jul 21, 2005
5,576
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There really hasn't been any sitting in our bleacher section throughout this playoff run which I don't remember happening since '04 and I'm very happy about it. Getting asked to sit during one of the World Series games in one of the runs was astounding to me and some of my other neighbors that had been around since '04. The average age of fans at this year's playoffs is definitely younger than I've seen in any of the other playoff runs (and it's not just because I'm getting older). EEI talked about the change in vibe at the park this year and how this was brought about in part by Cora suggesting changes in music/between inning stuff but I can't find an article supporting this.

The bleachers were absolutely insane, to the point where a young couple held up their infant, no more than 6 or 9 months, eliciting various chance of "we want baby", "baby", and, my favorite, "MVP" at which point the proud father held the baby over his head. It was really more of a Lion King Simba thing more than anything else, but the energy that this spoke of was something very reminiscent of 2003 in 2004.
I'm in section 36 and I couldn't figure out what the hell was going on over there for a while. Kid got some New Balance shoes too for the dance off win.
 

Max Power

thai good. you like shirt?
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Jul 20, 2005
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I'm in section 36 and I couldn't figure out what the hell was going on over there for a while. Kid got some New Balance shoes too for the dance off win.
There was another baby at the top of section 42 or 43. I wish the cameras could have caught both and made the dance off between those two.

The park does seem to be a bit younger than previous playoffs. The chants have mostly been good other than "Yankees Suck" long after they're eliminated when "Astros Suck" would work just as well. And there's always some asshole trying to start a V&N chant during the game. Even if the team gets bounced in this or the World Series, this run seems to have reversed some of the slide in interest since 2007.
 

Sille Skrub

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Mar 3, 2004
5,376
Massachusetts
I wonder how much is a huge post-covid exhale. Baseball - at least for the fan who is fully vaxxed, or who does not care, and anyone there is in one of those two categories, is totally normal again (this was not a political statement). Very little else in life is still. Put it together with this suddenly explosive team and suddenly extremely likable team (and a metric butt-ton of alcohol) and you get this sort of Fenway crowd.
I think his has a lot to do with it. We just went through a year of not having this ability at all. I see it at the Pats games as well. People are just happy to be out and back into stadiums.

Of course, when you eliminate the Yankees in a one game playoff and absolutely rip the cover off the ball like this team has been doing, that helps as well.

It's just a really fun ride we're on right now.
 

Light-Tower-Power

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Jun 14, 2013
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I was surprised to see that there are plenty of non-standing room tickets on StubHub for tonight in the low $100s right now. The crowds are going to keep being awesome as long as the younger fans remain priced in.
 

Hoya81

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It's a very non-corporate crowd who don't just wait for runs being scored.
I wonder if this is a result of corporate ticket holders giving up or putting their season tickets on hold due to Covid and getting more average fans into the premium seats.
 

mikeford

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Aug 6, 2006
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I think his has a lot to do with it. We just went through a year of not having this ability at all. I see it at the Pats games as well. People are just happy to be out and back into stadiums.
I think this is also part of the reason the crowd is younger than it has been for past playoff runs. The young people are the ones who don't really seem to have any lingering COVID fear or anxiety about going back out into crowds.
 

Soxy

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I wonder if this is a result of corporate ticket holders giving up or putting their season tickets on hold due to Covid and getting more average fans into the premium seats.
I had the exact same thought. Can’t help but wonder how many season ticket holders balked at having to pay full price for a bunch of games they weren’t certain they’d be able to attend.

My understanding was that the Sox were making them pay for all 81 games up front, even when they were limiting capacity at the beginning of the season. Would be curious how many passed on renewing and now those playoff tickets are up for grabs. Not trying to shit on season ticket holders, but playoff games are an old hat for a lot of them.

Could be a good amount of fresh blood in the seats this year, which may help explain why the crowds have seemed louder and more energetic. I’ve been fortunate enough to go to a lot of Sox playoff games over the years, and I’d be lying if I said the first one that I went to in 2003 felt the same as the last one that I went to in 2018. It hits different when you’ve been to that many. Starts to feel like just another game, for better or worse.
 

BroncosSox

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Sep 14, 2021
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I wonder how much is a huge post-covid exhale. Baseball - at least for the fan who is fully vaxxed, or who does not care, and anyone there is in one of those two categories, is totally normal again (this was not a political statement). Very little else in life is still. Put it together with this suddenly explosive team and suddenly extremely likable team (and a metric butt-ton of alcohol) and you get this sort of Fenway crowd.
It's definitely a huge release for people and also a reminder not to take this for granted. Fans are doing their part.
 

HoyaSoxa

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I wonder if this is a result of corporate ticket holders giving up or putting their season tickets on hold due to Covid and getting more average fans into the premium seats.
This has to be a factor, and it is really a joyous atmosphere at the ballpark. My dad is 68 and he put his tickets that he has had since 1983 on hold for the season, though he did get a chance to buy some playoff tix in worse seats based on his status. I am sure many others in his demographic are not going to these games.

I have been fortunate to get to 2 games - Yanks and last night, and these crowds are having as much fun as any I can remember (caveat that the only game I attend in 04 was Game 3 of the ALCS, which was not fun in any way).

I do get tired of Yankees Suck cheers when they are already eliminated, but there wasn't a ton of that last night (I did not stick around for the A-Rod mockery). Any chance we can steal a Ted Lasso/EPL chant - "He's here, he's there, he's every-fucking-where, Ki-Ke! Ki-Ke!"
 

TFisNEXT

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I don't have any official numbers to back this up, but it seems like maybe there are less tickets being bought up in blocks by the corporate crowd. I noticed (and others did as well on here) the ticket prices for these playoffs were not as unreasonable as I had become used to seeing in recent years. You could get like 50-60 dollar bleacher tickets right off their site during the ALDS which I don't recall being that cheap in any of the 2010s playoff runs.

That also helps the younger crowd get into the gate. They don't have to sacrifice 1 month of their rent savings to go to a game.
 

tims4wins

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Jul 15, 2005
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These crowds are different than any Fenway crowds I've ever experienced. The taunting, borderline cocky attitude is dare I say MFY / Toilet-esque. The fans know the Sox are going to win and they want blood. It's incredible. The buildup to the grand slam last night was amazing.
 

Archer1979

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The crowds are definitely the Tenth Man. After Verdugo's at bat in the second (ok... plate appearance), Urquidy was rattled just by the PA. Then the crowd got into it especially after Altuve's error.

Mystic Merlyn said it best last night, Ortiz could have stood up Commodus-style and given A-Rod the thumbs down showing tacit approval to sacrifice A-Rod to the crowd.

Awesome showing.
 

Hoya81

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I had the exact same thought. Can’t help but wonder how many season ticket holders balked at having to pay full price for a bunch of games they weren’t certain they’d be able to attend.

My understanding was that the Sox were making them pay for all 81 games up front, even when they were limiting capacity at the beginning of the season. Would be curious how many passed on renewing and now those playoff tickets are up for grabs. Not trying to shit on season ticket holders, but playoff games are an old hat for a lot of them.

Could be a good amount of fresh blood in the seats this year, which may help explain why the crowds have seemed louder and more energetic. I’ve been fortunate enough to go to a lot of Sox playoff games over the years, and I’d be lying if I said the first one that I went to in 2003 felt the same as the last one that I went to in 2018. It hits different when you’ve been to that many. Starts to feel like just another game, for better or worse.
The crowds at Gillette have also seemed super hot for I assume the same reasons, even outside of the Brady game.
 

Fratboy

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These crowds are different than any Fenway crowds I've ever experienced. The taunting, borderline cocky attitude is dare I say MFY / Toilet-esque. The fans know the Sox are going to win and they want blood. It's incredible. The buildup to the grand slam last night was amazing.
Maybe I'm projecting here a bit, but people know this team at its core, fundamental level, is not as good as the 2004, 2007, 2013, or 2018 teams. Hell, they might not even be as good as 2002, 2003, 2008, 2016, or 2017. They're probably most comparable to the 2005 squad: a weird mishmash of a thunderous lineup and a mediocre pitching staff that somehow managed to succeed despite a toxic clubhouse environment and a ton of injuries that put the season in peril. The difference, of course, is that the 2005 team (and fans) had all the expectations in the world on them, and the 2021 team does not.

This is a good, not great, team, that's at its absolute peak performance on both sides of the ball. The fans, by and large, recognize that (projection again?), and combined with late-stage pandemic tension relief, contributes to a celebratory environment characterized by what they know best: pummeling the opposition with their collective voice into submission.

Making it to the ALDS was all I wanted. Beating the Yankees decisively was icing on a tasty cake. Beating the Rays poured on maple bourbon glaze. Demolishing the Astros is doing lines of coke on the table when you're drunk on the bourbon.

It's thrilling, exciting, and I'm here for it.
 

Archer1979

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Maybe I'm projecting here a bit, but people know this team at its core, fundamental level, is not as good as the 2004, 2007, 2013, or 2018 teams. Hell, they might not even be as good as 2002, 2003, 2008, 2016, or 2017. They're probably most comparable to the 2005 squad: a weird mishmash of a thunderous lineup and a mediocre pitching staff that somehow managed to succeed despite a toxic clubhouse environment and a ton of injuries that put the season in peril. The difference, of course, is that the 2005 team (and fans) had all the expectations in the world on them, and the 2021 team does not.

This is a good, not great, team, that's at its absolute peak performance on both sides of the ball. The fans, by and large, recognize that (projection again?), and combined with late-stage pandemic tension relief, contributes to a celebratory environment characterized by what they know best: pummeling the opposition with their collective voice into submission.

Making it to the ALDS was all I wanted. Beating the Yankees decisively was icing on a tasty cake. Beating the Rays poured on maple bourbon glaze. Demolishing the Astros is doing lines of coke on the table when you're drunk on the bourbon.

It's thrilling, exciting, and I'm here for it.
This is so spot on. A lot of it has to do with how out of the blue that this all is. Down 5 -1 late to the Nats on the last day of the regular season seems like eons ago.

It's not quite yet Miracle on Ice territory, but the crowd is going to do everything it can to lift these guys up.
 

HoyaSoxa

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That also helps the younger crowd get into the gate. They don't have to sacrifice 1 month of their rent savings to go to a game.
Whatever people are saving on tickets they seem to be plowing into beer sales. My social sphere has been decidedly limited for the past 18 months or so, undoubtedly skewing my perspective on what it is like to be around a lot of people drinking, but the games I have attended definitely felt like the drunkest crowds I have seen in a long time, and those were Monday and Tuesday nights. And I am not judging - I had several 617s at both games, it just felt right. I am sure these series are huge profit makers for the Sox, and great nights for the vendors, too.
 

Matty005

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I don't have any official numbers to back this up, but it seems like maybe there are less tickets being bought up in blocks by the corporate crowd. I noticed (and others did as well on here) the ticket prices for these playoffs were not as unreasonable as I had become used to seeing in recent years. You could get like 50-60 dollar bleacher tickets right off their site during the ALDS which I don't recall being that cheap in any of the 2010s playoff runs.

That also helps the younger crowd get into the gate. They don't have to sacrifice 1 month of their rent savings to go to a game.
I actually think the face value prices are more expensive for this run compared to others. I think most of the young fans are waiting it out and letting the prices drop to get in. Probably all college aged, close by, and have the luxury of waiting until a few hours before the game to buy them off Stubhub. They probably bank on the prices going down (which they have for all the games) and if not, they figure they can drink and watch the game at the bars.
 

tims4wins

PN23's replacement
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Jul 15, 2005
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I loathe Tomase but he... kind of nails it

Someone hoisted a baby during the scoreboard dance-off and the Fenway crowd exploded. "Baby! Baby!" they chanted. When the DJ played Mr. Brightside by The Killers in the sixth inning, the entire crowd sang along, nailing every lyric. In the Red Sox dugout, postseason-ineligible infielder Jose Iglesias hugged anyone who entered his airspace, a grinning cyclone of isn't-this-amazing energy.

Stop me if you heard this recently, but a giant party broke out at Fenway Park on Monday night, and the only people not having the time of their lives were the Houston Astros.


https://www.nbcsports.com/boston/red-sox/red-sox-are-two-wins-away-world-series-and-it-seems-inevitable?cid=sm_npd_rsn_bos_twt_mn
 

Ralphwiggum

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I've been a season ticket holder since 2000 so I've been at my share of incredible playoff moments at Fenway, and I'll add to the chorus of the crowds this year are absolutely insane. From 2000 through 2019 our seats were in the bleachers, Section 36, which we loved. We tried to move up several times but the options were just never that attractive given the pricing increase we would have had to swallow. Then after 2019 we were contacted by the Sox ticket office and offered choice seats in Section 26, row 2. These are seats that in the past would NEVER would have come available as season tickets. For a while I was part of a group that owned a piece of a ticket in Section 25, this was one of those tickets that nobody even knew the real owner, but it had been passed down for years rather than lose it. Now all of a sudden we end up with better tickets than that without even really asking.

My point, I think a lot of older (non-corporate) season tickets like that have turned over, whether due to a few down years, owners getting older, ticket prices, or some combination of all of that, and the Sox weren't able to get them sold as seasons, and a lot of those seats are available for purchase at face. The crowd around us last night was super-young, same with the Rays games. And this generation of fans has absolutely none of the baggage of those of us whose formative years as fans was pre-2004. Whoever said upthread that there's no thought about blowing a lead or losing, it's just pure energy and waiting for the kill shot in every AB, is spot on.

The only thing I'll disagree with is the Yankees suck chant. Who gives a shit about the MFYs anymore? Allowing them to be the subject of interest for even a second gives them too much credit. Fuck Altuve, on the other hand, was sublime.
 

Red(s)HawksFan

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The only thing I'll disagree with is the Yankees suck chant. Who gives a shit about the MFYs anymore? Allowing them to be the subject of interest for even a second gives them too much credit. Fuck Altuve, on the other hand, was sublime.
100% agree. Was never a big fan of Yankees Suck, but it was fine during the Pedro era when the Sox perpetually finished second to them and the rivalry was at its peak. But after 2004, it lost whatever luster it had and should have died then, let alone after '07, '13, and '18 (the last of which included another defeat of the Yankees in the post-season).

At this stage, I can mildly tolerate it at Yankee games only. There's definitely no need for it when other teams are in town.
 

Batman Likes The Sox

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I don't know that I'll ever tire of Yankees Suck or Beat LA or similar, no matter who is playing. Maybe someday, but I can't imagine it.

I definitely think that a street crowd chanting "Yankees Suck," egged on by Papi, and directed at ARod, is transcendent.

Even if no Yankees are around, is it not useful to remind everyone that the Yankees suck, as a point of order, and also as a general celebration that the information itself is factual?
 

pokey_reese

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The atmosphere at the game last night was fantastic. Had to spend most of the game on your feet just because so many other people were rising for every two-strike count, so you wouldn't have been able to see if you didn't stand up. The best part for me though, along the lines of the thread, was the family behind us that was there with two little kids. I'm no expert, but they were pretty little, say in the 4-7 range. These boys, especially the older one, was hyper aware of every player, was cognizant of the game situation and what it meant, was having a constant conversation with his dad about the game, the whole nine yards. Never once seemed bored or had any interest in getting snacks instead of asking about the pitch, was complaining about bad strike calls, asked about the retired numbers out in RF, confirmed at his dad's quizzing that he knew who Ted Williams was. This was clearly a multi-generational love of the Red Sox unfolding in real time, and the product of what must have been hundreds of hours of watching the games together at home. It was extremely heart-warming.

But what really cemented it?

When the kid started ragging on Joe Buck, who he heard people say was in the booth, and his dad had to quickly stop him from saying something that was clearly going to be inappropriate coming out of a small child's mouth about Joe Buck. Not that he disagreed with the sentiment, he just warned him not to say it around other people. Whoever you were, in Field Box 78, I hereby declare you 'Father of the Year.'
 
Maybe I'm projecting here a bit, but people know this team at its core, fundamental level, is not as good as the 2004, 2007, 2013, or 2018 teams. Hell, they might not even be as good as 2002, 2003, 2008, 2016, or 2017. They're probably most comparable to the 2005 squad: a weird mishmash of a thunderous lineup and a mediocre pitching staff that somehow managed to succeed despite a toxic clubhouse environment and a ton of injuries that put the season in peril. The difference, of course, is that the 2005 team (and fans) had all the expectations in the world on them, and the 2021 team does not.

This is a good, not great, team, that's at its absolute peak performance on both sides of the ball. The fans, by and large, recognize that (projection again?), and combined with late-stage pandemic tension relief, contributes to a celebratory environment characterized by what they know best: pummeling the opposition with their collective voice into submission.

Making it to the ALDS was all I wanted. Beating the Yankees decisively was icing on a tasty cake. Beating the Rays poured on maple bourbon glaze. Demolishing the Astros is doing lines of coke on the table when you're drunk on the bourbon.

It's thrilling, exciting, and I'm here for it.
I agree with your overall point but I have to quibble with the 2005 comp. This team has been fortunate as far as injuries goes (the covid outbreak notwithstanding) and has seemed to have a good, perhaps even great clubhouse atmosphere.
 

Fratboy

Mr. MENsa
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Nov 29, 2003
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McCarver Park
I agree with your overall point but I have to quibble with the 2005 comp. This team has been fortunate as far as injuries goes (the covid outbreak notwithstanding) and has seemed to have a good, perhaps even great clubhouse atmosphere.
You're right, and I got some details about 2005 wrong. They were solid but unspectacular all season. Once the Orioles came back down to earth, the Red Sox moved into first place for the rest of the season, save a two week or so period when they were overtaken by a red-hot Yankees team and clawed their way back into a tie. Their playoff spot was only ever really in jeopardy once Cleveland got close and they blew it.

And yes, it's clear there's a lot of camaraderie here in 2021 *right now*. Winning when you have zero expectations foisted on you breeds a congenial environment, for sure, but I can't imagine there were many happy campers in August when they had 9 people on the Covid IL and things were completely falling apart.

They got healthy, and they're playing their hearts out when they need to the most, and there's nothing better than witnessing it live. So maybe 2013 is the better comp :)
 

The Talented Allen Ripley

holden
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Oct 2, 2003
12,312
South Shore, MA
Listened to EEI on the way home and Merloni & Fauria couldn't stop raving about the energy of the crowd, noting in particular how young it's now skewed (several minutes were devoted to the significance of The Killers' "Mr. Brightside" to that generation). These kids have no negative baggage regarding the Sox, they're there to watch some great baseball and have a blast doing it. Fenway is now party central.

Merloni revelled in dumping on Felger & Mazz's constant criticism that baseball's fanbase is aging out, you could hear the glee in his voice.
 

Fratboy

Mr. MENsa
Lifetime Member
SoSH Member
Nov 29, 2003
16,920
McCarver Park
Listened to EEI on the way home and Merloni & Fauria couldn't stop raving about the energy of the crowd, noting in particular how young it's now skewed (several minutes were devoted to the significance of The Killers' "Mr. Brightside" to that generation). These kids have no negative baggage regarding the Sox, they're there to watch some great baseball and have a blast doing it. Fenway is now party central.

Merloni revelled in dumping on Felger & Mazz's constant criticism that baseball's fanbase is aging out, you could hear the glee in his voice.
Digging into this and it looks like it's a big deal at University of Michigan, but what was their take on it. This is the first I've heard of the phenomenon.
 

The Talented Allen Ripley

holden
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SoSH Member
Oct 2, 2003
12,312
South Shore, MA
Digging into this and it looks like it's a big deal at University of Michigan, but what was their take on it. This is the first I've heard of the phenomenon.
It's been huge at BC for years, the student section sings it a capella at hockey and football games. Basically it's Gen Z's "Don't Stop Believin'"; an older popular song somehow appropriated by a younger set.