Friday, July 29, 2011

Of Hit-streaks and Nostalgia

Yesterday afternoon, in the eighth inning, Dustin Pedroia came to the plate hitless after his previous three at-bats (he did, however, have a walk).  The crowd, aware of his 24-game active hit streak, got to its feet and cheered, and were then rewarded when Pedey took a neck-high 3-2 offering from Greg Holland and deposited it in the Monster Seats, successfully extending his streak to 25 games.

The longest such streak in the majors this year belongs to Pedroia's close friend, Andre Ethier, with 30 games.  One can only imagine the ribbing Ethier will get if Pedey manages to notch hits in the next 6 games.

The most special part of the situation, in my opinion at least, was the fan reaction, and Terry Francona agreed: "I do think our fans are pretty special. They do react to things like that. It's part of what makes Fenway so great," he said. "We don't need to have President races or mustard racing ketchup. Our fans like our baseball. I actually really think that's cool. Nothing against mustard."

 This is part of why I find Fenway Park so special - we don't need the gimmicks that other teams depend on to draw and keep fans.  The new Yankee Stadium, for instance, felt to me like I was in a shopping mall and a baseball game broke out - it was plastered with technicolor ads and gimmicks, there were games and giveaways every half-inning on the scoreboard, almost like a minor-league stadium.

While Fenway does have a big new high-def scoreboard, it also hangs onto nostalgia with it's manual scoreboard under the very same Monster Pedroia homered into yesterday, as well as the same wooden grandstand seats in which your father and grandfather might have sat.  And the fans are just as knowledgeable and vociferous as they were when Teddy Ballgame was swatting homers from that very same batters box.

No comments:

Post a Comment