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Banner Day in Beantown
2005-04-12 04:51
by Alex Belth
Note: The Bronx Banter blog has moved to bronxbanterblog.com.

"They won...For the respect of baseball and for the respect of the Red Sox organization, you've got to be there. After 86 years, I think they deserved to win one. And why not celebrate it as (much) as they could? That's okay. I have no problem with that." Mariano Rivera (N.Y.Daily News)

As good as Opening Day in the Bronx felt for Yankee fans, yesterday's home opener at Fenway Park was even sweeter for Red Sox Nation. The Sox received their World Serious rings before the game and then proceeded to knock the stuffing out of the Yanks. Mike Mussina was not sharp, Alex Rodriguez made a key error, and Tim Wakefield baffled New York once again.

For their part, the Yankees watched the pre-game ceremonies from their dugout, applauding at times. The gesture didn't go unnoticed by the Red Sox. The Bombers clapped when Johnny Pesky was given a ring. According to Mike Lupica:

The Yankees were all class yesterday, led by their classy manager, right there on the top step for every minute of the ring ceremony yesterday, and the raising of the flag. When Terry Francona came out first to get his ring, he stood near first base and the first thing he did was point across the field at the Yankees. "We were curious," Torre said. And maybe, just maybe, for this one day, everybody on the field, both sides of it, both uniforms, knew what Pesky has known his baseball life, long before the sides were even, about why this rivalry has always mattered the way it has.

The Bombers were booed when introduced before the game. But Mariano Rivera heard nothing but cheers. To his credit, Rivera rolled with it. The Daily News reports:

"I didn't know they loved me so much here," Rivera said after being roundly cheered at Fenway Park during player introductions before the Red Sox's home opener against the Yankees yesterday. As he jogged onto the field, Rivera returned the derisive ovation with an ear-to-ear grin and a doffing of his cap to the crowd.

..."I thought he was a good sport about it too," Joe Torre said. "It's what they do here. And, of course, Yankee Stadium is no different."

..."That's me," Rivera said. "What can I do? Get upset there and start throwing baseballs at people? I don't think that's the right thing. The right thing is to just follow them. Go with them."

Today gives a day of rest. Another day for Sox fans to soak it all in. Curt Schilling will make his 2005 debut tomorrow night. Jaret Wright goes for the Yanks.

Comments
2005-04-12 05:26:18
1.   jayd
If yesterday wasn't a day to be philosophical, I don't know what was. These people are appalling.
2005-04-12 06:17:12
2.   STONER
I know it's early in the season, but the Yanks could not look any flatter - no spark at all - and I am personally embarrassed when the Yanks make Wakefield look like Nolan Ryan!
2005-04-12 07:26:51
3.   NetShrine
Look at the bright side. The score was 8 to 1. You can't spell 1918 without the 1 and the 8. It's a sign!
2005-04-12 07:39:42
4.   Cliff Corcoran
1918 doesn't mean anything anymore. That said, fingers off the panic buttons, people. The Yanks and Sox have split four games this season (and the Yanks really should have won Game 3 in the Bronx last week), and have identical records. The difference being that the Yanks lost a three game series to the Orioles, who project to have a winning record this year, while the Sox lost a three game series to the Blue Jays, who don't. The Yanks can afford to split the next two games with the Sox if they take 2 of 3 in Baltimore over the weekend. Remember the old formula: split with the good teams, dominate the bad teams. Besides, this team will get hot sooner or later.
2005-04-12 07:46:38
5.   Jen
And remember too, that the '98 Yanks also started out 3-4.
2005-04-12 10:17:29
6.   rsmith51
Just out of curiousity, has anyone seen Fever Pitch yet? If so, is it tough for a Yankee fan to stomach?
2005-04-12 10:43:44
7.   Rosbif22
Erm...it wasn't as bad to me as it could have been...it didn't seem like they made as big a deal out of 2004 as I would have thought...there is a lot of Red Sox stuff though (obviously) :(
2005-04-12 11:16:55
8.   Marcus
Here's to hoping Schilling has an outing like his last minor league start when he pitches tomorrow night. And here's to hoping that Jaret Wright strikes out 9 in addition to the 2 or 3 automatic strike outs of Mark Bellhorn. It'd be really nice to watch A-Rod lace one over the Green Monster in the first inning...
2005-04-12 12:14:29
9.   Dan M
I wouldn't count on 2 of those 3 happening. Our best shot may be Thursday with Randy against Arroyo.
2005-04-12 13:04:29
10.   Matt B
Fever Pitch? It would take an awful lot of money to get me to see a movie starring Jimmy Fallon, let alone one that glorifies the Sox.
2005-04-12 17:12:51
11.   Rosbif22
Then again, when your wife really wants to see something, that doesn't leave you much of a choice...
2005-04-12 22:22:31
12.   David
Yankees runs scored: 22
Runs allowed: 34

Predicted quadratic winning percentage: .346

In short, the Yankees have played worse than their won/lost record indicates.

2005-04-13 03:35:47
13.   SteveF
Pretty sweet that we get a pythagorean update only 7 games into the season! I'm kind of hoping that was posted at least partly in jest!

As for Rivera, if there's any ballplayer on the planet earth who can laugh away mock cheers, it would have to be Rivera. First ballot hall of fame lock, four rings, and regarded by most as the single biggest reason for Yankee postseason dominance in the late 90s. If I was Rivera, I'd be laughing too.

2005-04-13 05:37:34
14.   KJC
"...If I was Rivera, I'd be laughing too."

I would guess that the mock cheers Rivera got are much different (i.e. less caustic) than those aimed at A-Rod. Rivera is probably the only Yankee (other than Torre) that Sox fans will admit to actually liking. I could be wrong, but I would guess that Rivera is to Sox fans what Wakefield is to Yankee fans.

2005-04-13 08:29:16
15.   Rich Lederer
I wouldn't look too deeply into the Yankees or Red Sox records at this point. Not only is it early but you have to remember that they have played each other in half their games so a record of around .500 is about all one could expect from either side right about now.
2005-04-13 09:05:03
16.   Beth
Maybe Rivera laughed because it was...um...I don't know...funny.

jayd--"These people are appalling"? Exactly what leads you to that statement? Because of the mock-cheers for Rivera?

If your answer to that is yes, I have a few follow-ups. One is, do you not grasp the difference between the mock-cheers for A-Rod and those for Rivera? And two, were you warned beforehand that being a Yankees fan would necessitate handing over your sense of humor?

2005-04-14 08:12:18
17.   Cliff Corcoran
Hey now, I've been very pleased with the civility of the comments discussions since our move to the new site. Let's not start bickering with one another. We thirst for debate, but insults are not welcome. And that's not directed at Beth, whom I'm glad to see back in the fold, but at everyone. We value your participation, but hope that you will value the participation of others others as well. Play nice.

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