Saturday, December 15, 2007

Cod-Boy Apologizes

[Update: Don't tell me we're going to start hearing what a great guy Pettitte is for his "iffy" apology. Seriously, with all the talk of HGH in the six years since he did it, and him talking to the J-man on his knees every night, why couldn't he have come forward and said that he did it? Why did he wait til after he was caught? I wonder, whether he was a Christian or not, if this weighed on his conscience for six whole years. So, because of that, I hope he doesn't get the Giambi-treatment, i.e. gets rewarded for "manning up" while Bonds' balls are getting shot into space or whatever. ]

Andy Pettitte admitted to using human growth hormone twice, in 2002, to help him get back from injury. So I guess Jesus was like, "Dude, 'member when you took that stuff I clearly told you not to take? And you listened to the devil-guy on your other shoulder? See, it came back to haunt you. You gotta listen, man! Jesus! Terrible job."

(I call him cod-boy because I'll never forget the Church of Latter Day Saints commercials he used to do, where he talked about his "personal relationship with god," only it really sounded like "cod.")

Me Babbling About Tix Again

I always complain about the scalping agencies, but don't think I don't feel the fees the Red Sox themselves charge for tickets aren't ridiculous. The face value is high enough, why do they have to add so much in fees?

The actual price you pay for a 12-dollar upper bleacher seat can be as high as $25.75. (If you're buying just one, over the internet, and choosing print-at-home.) The per-ticket fee is $4.25. The overall service fee for each order is $7.00. And print-at-home is $2.50. Add it to the 12 bucks, and you're actually paying more than double for your ticket. A 26-dollar bleacher seat is almost 40 bucks.

I almost bought a front-row bleacher seat just now. (Above the high wall in center.) But then I thought, Is 40 worth it for having people walking right in front of me the whole game? But then, it's the front row! If it were really 26 bucks total, I'd have done it. But I've got Christmas shopping to do....and I've already got 13 games and the bulk of them haven't even gone on sale yet. So....if you want that front row seat, it's the May 20th game. Go now.

Floridafornia Dreamin'

Hank Steinbrenner, aka Michael Whore-leone, says this:

"For the near future, we're in a no-lose situation, to tell you the truth."

There's that Yankee arrogance for you. Or are they just delusional? It's kind of like how Yankee fans can look at a report which concludes all these Yankee players did steroids, but they somehow read it as "David Ortiz and the rest of the Red Sox are all totally on steroids." They've really lost their minds, and it's all because of the World Champion Boston Red Sox, I think.

Hope you [Floridians/people who go to Florida] had good luck this morning with the Spring Training tix. I got some for my cousin Amy--but the weird thing was, I was gonna be in the virtual waiting room anyway. You know, just to stay sharp for when they put the bulk of regular season games on sale. Am I sick? Anyway, I got my practice (that whole tabbed browsing thing is the way to go, I should've done it for the Sox Pax...), and she got her tix, so it was a successful trip to the VWR. I'm not planning a Florida trip this year. I have a few times in the past, but never followed through on actually going. I'm more of a regular season traveler. May go to Cincy in June, we'll see.

We've got a kwiz that's still unanswered. I'll give a clue here. Some of the letters in the name of Kara's first guess can be moved around to spell the name. Depending on how you spell it. And I don't know how the guy spelled it.

Friday, December 14, 2007

Dream: Alive

Three and a half years ago, when I started this blog, I tried to get the message across that the Red Sox were too good for the drought to continue, and that the Yanks could be beat and that they're a bunch of cheaters.

Now everyone knows it's all true.

Pretty cool, huh?

Seriously, after all my complaining about everyone talking about a Bonds asterisk and Giambi/Sheffield getting off scot-free, I'm so psyched to see people (real people, the newspapers, etc,. not just "psychos" like me) putting asterisks next to Yankee championships and saying Clemens might not make the Hall. Beautiful. Even when I used to imagine a post-drought world, it was nowhere near as good as this.

Here's to beating the Yanks again in '08. And every year after that for all eternity.

Theo Raffle

For 100 bucks, you and three friends get a shot at hanging out with Theo in his box at a game in '08. If you enter and win, feel free to invite me along.

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Kwiz Berger/Rejected Soap Ideas Vol. II

What was the name of the ball boy down the third base line at Fenway that Castiglione and Trupiano were so obsessed with? Clues: It was, I don't know, late-'90s, early-'00s, maybe. He had red hair. You only need the first name, so feel free to guess. But note that it's not a common name.

In other news, I said I'd post some of my proposed soap names/ideas for my girlfriend's soap company, Stella Marie, which get rejected by the boss. ("Stab Apple" will always be at the top of the list.) So here's my latest:

Collector geeks, after hours of leafing through used items in thrift stores and conventions, do you ever just want to wash the scum off? Well now there's a soap for you. A peppermint aroma fills the senses, but a hint of musty attic-smell will take you back to the childhood you never left in the first place. The corners of this full-bodied bar aren't quite sharp, and you'll find very minor flaws in its surface. That's right, it's:

NEAR MINT! (Nr Mnt) $5.00 ^

NOT for sale (yet!) at Stella Marie Soap Company.

Captain Un-Named

Have been driving five M.P.H. through a snowstorm for the past few hours. During the ride, we listened to Mitchell's press conference, followed by some radio commentary by Tom Caron on WEEI. The big news is that the big news that Varitek was on the list was wrong. So that earlier report from MSNBC, which also named Damon, was, uh, a lie I guess. TJ by Tom Caron who said MSNBC "probably got it from some blog or something." As if it would be that person's fault if a major news corporation took their baseless writing and reported it as news. Someone better get fired for that.

TC also noted that the apology is never as loud as the false accusation. It'll be plenty loud when Jason is announced at Fenway on Opening Day, though.

So the 2000 champion Yanks were pretty much a cartel, with Roger the Traitor, Pettitte (what would Jesus do? Cheat, apparently), Stanton, Justice, Glenallen Hill, Denny Neagle, Jason Grimsley, of course, and, ha, Knoblauch in on the act. (Like with Gagne, though, the stuff didn't work for one Mike Lansing.) You tellin' me Derek Jeter didn't at least hear about this stuff going on?

Disappointed to hear Mo Vaughn did that crap. TJ there.

Glad to see Sheffield's name. This jerk has been denying everything and acting like I'm the asshole for suggesting it to boot.

Here's another interesting thing: I saw Todd Pratt's name, and immediately thought of him in his New Britain Red Sox days, as that's how I'll always think of him (even though I witnessed live his HR in Philly to beat us in an '03 game). Then I noticed another former "Sox on the Rise," Josias Manzanillo! Could the '89 and '90 New Britain Red Sox have a little secret? More likely, the two stayed friends later in their careers. But come on, who's next, Jeff Bagw--oh, wait. Hey... and Mo Vaughn--what's going on here? New Britain, CT, steroid hotbed!

Thigh-Enhancing Drugs?

Just heard on the radio that Varitek will be on "the list," which officially comes out at 2:00.

Also, Nomar, Clemens, Damon, Pettitte, Pujols, and someone who got a bad batch--Eric Gagne. Terrible job by all if true. We'll see what happens when the full list is released....

The Mysterious Bicentennial Patch


In 1976, several baseball teams wore sleeve patches commemorating the U.S. bicentennial. I always wondered about the Red Sox' version. It was red with a white star and dark writing that said, "Massachusetts Bicentennial." You can see it in the Hall of Fame Uniform Database here.

I think it was when I started to see the Mitchell & Ness 1975 Yaz jersey for sale with the patch that I started to wonder. Was that just a mistake, or did they wear it in '75, too? Like, maybe to get ready for the following year's celebration? I knew for sure that it was not on the uniforms in the World Series that season. On the pavilion level at Fenway, you can see a real '75 jersey, and it indeed has the patch. And I recently found a picture of Opening Day 1975, and everyone is wearing it on their left sleeve, as they are on the 1976 Topps Red Sox team card, which shows the '75 team picture. And this Globe photo from August 4th, 1975 of Denny Doyle gives you a nice shot of the patch on a real person:

So they definitely wore them in '75, making the new question: Did they wear it in '76 at all?

And what about the wording: Massachusetts Bicentennial? So they're really talking about the state's 200th birthday. But wouldn't that be 1976 anyway? The internet tells me Mass was admitted to the union in 1788. This is so confusing.

But it gets more confusing. Check out these pictures of some 1977 Topps cards:
The pictures should be from the previous season, 1976. The shots of Hobson and House are clearly from spring training. So were they just wearing some of the old '75 unis the following spring training? Or are they older pictures, from spring training of '75? Well, Tom House wasn't on the Red Sox until 1976. So these photos have to be from '76. Also note that House is wearing the patch on THE WRONG SLEEVE.

So the timeline looks like this: They wore them starting with Opening Day 1975 and running through the regular season, then removed them for the '75 playoffs, then broke them out again for '76 spring training. Right?

Right, we think, but there's more. Yaz wore the patch in 1976 on the left sleeve in the regular season along with the Tom Yawkey memorial armband, which was worn from July 1976 through the end of that season ('77 yearbook pic would be from '76):

And leave it to Spaceman Lee to wear both the band and the patch on the OTHER SLEEVE:

(He and House were left-handed pitchers, so maybe they were allowed to put any extra stuff on the sleeve of their non-pitching arm.) So the patches were worn well into 1976.

But we're still not done. All the photos of the Red Sox from the '76 Topps card set show patchless uniforms. Which means that during part of the '75 season, they didn't wear the patch. (Could those be pics from '74? This one was hard to prove, as most of the players on the '75 team were also on the '74 team. But I finally came across a guy--Jim Burton--who had never played a big league game before 1975, who had a 1976 card. That means most of the '76 card shots are definitely from '75, as a lot of them are pretty clearly taken on the same day in Oakland. There was only one series in Oakland that included day games that year, so I'd say these pics are from August 9th or 10th, 1975.)

So they wore it at some points but not others in both 1975 and 1976. That's what we can say for sure. I know what you're saying. Not you, the really nerdy guy behind you. "I don't see any road jerseys with the patch. Maybe they wore the patch for all of '75 and '76, but only at home. Like, when they were in Massachusetts." Okay, could be. But they didn't wear it at home in the '75 World Series. And the Mitchell & Ness version makes a road version with the patch. (Note that the URL says '75 but on the page it says '76, as if they've been wrestling with this "which year was it?" controversy themselves.) And the uniform database linked above also shows it on both the home and away jersey (again, in '76 only). So a lot of people think it was worn on the road. But here's Dwight Evans in '76 (see armband, so it's at least July) without the patch, in Yankee Stadium:And here's Fisk, same deal ('76 regular season, road game, armband, no patch), about to tag Willie Randolph:
So there may be some truth to the home/road theory. In fact, that would be my guess: The bicentennial patch was worn, at home only, for 1975 and 1976, excluding the World Series. Which means the state of Massachusetts was "born" in 1775 and 1776. And 1788. So...

But what about the '75 ALCS? I can't find any pics of that at all. I think I've seen a shot of the Sox celebrating ending Oakland's three-year championship run, but that's about all I've ever seen. Whenever it was I saw that, I wasn't looking for the patch. And it's not like the team took off the patch to wear a World Series patch. That trend didn't start until 1987. There's clearly no patch worn in the '75 Series. (There is a patch commemorating the series, but it was made later.)

Just to add one final bit of mystery, someone on ebay is currently selling the patch. Only instead of red, it's white with blue writing! Where did these come from?

If anyone has any further info or ideas, feel free to add them in the comments.

Bonus Monty section: Hey, eagle eyes, you've noticed that the '77 card of Bob Montgomery looks like it's from the same day as the bulk of the '76 cards. Looks like it to me, too. Just proves again that Topps does break out older photos occasionally. Watch for that when doing your own research projects.

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Tix & Pix

To clear up confusion--when I said the other day that I got tickets to the "big day," I was referring to the day the Red Sox break the all-time consecutive sellout streak, September 3rd vs. Baltimore. I just checked now, and you can still get infield grandstand seats one behind the other, if you want. Don't pay the ridiculous prices. Go to the source. They're right there now. (If you don't know how to get "piggy back" seats, uh, e-mail me I guess.)

I snapped this pic on Sunday, while driving, on my way home from New York. Yankee Stadium with the new Yankee Stadium peeking out from behind it. It's getting there.

At Chan's new apartment in NYC, he's got this little screen which shows you who's at the door downstairs. Here's our friend Gumby as seen through it.

The Ickey Shuffle

The latest kwiz has been answered. Ickey Woods was the guy. I was watching "I Love '89" on VH1, and they had a segment on that year's Super Bowl. Show me the Ickey Shuffle, I said to the TV, but to my surprise, it got no mention. They all just talked about Joe Montana. Anyway, the Shuffle was awesome. Way better than the Teuffel Shuffle. (Tim Teuffel is best known as the guy who let a grounder go through his legs to allow the winning run to score in a 1986 World Series game. Well, a guy.) In the clip above that I taped off TV in 1988, we see the "Ickey Ickey Shake." We also see Ickey doing the famous shuffle in front of a favorite Jet of mine from back then, Erik McMillan. First you'll see some other wacky end zone celebrations, though.

Great line by Costas toward the end, and then Rashad finishes it off with a comment on a theme of mine lately--the Irish Jig.

Monday, December 10, 2007

BD Tix

Did everybody remember to get tickets for the big day? I got mine. Go do it now.

Sunday, December 09, 2007


[Update, 4:00: Like last year, they've put the September weekday games on sale. Go get 'em now.]

The Opening Day packs sold out within an hour. It would be 12 before I got through to the ticket office at all. No, I didn't sit there for the full 12. I even drove to CT, and now I'm on my way to NYC to visit Chan and Gumby, who's on taking his annual trip to the east coast. Which is way safer than Iraq, where he sometimes has to go. So the main tickets I wanted were gone, but I still figured I could get a couple of single tickets to April/May games, even though I'll already have four from my 10-game plan. Or a foursome of seats or something. As I was about to order, though, the ticket office went offline or something. So I waited until morning, but there were plenty of tix available. I figured I'd wait on the foursome until they release the summer games. So this morning I got a nice single in section 10 for 30 bucks to a day game, and another upper bleacher for another day game for 12 bucks. Tip: If you want standing room, just buy upper bleacher for 12 instead of the 20-dollar standing room tickets, and then go stand in the same spot you'd stand in if you had SRO tickets. Perfectly legal. Whenever I want SRO, I just buy upper bleacher if there are any.

Anyway, it doesn't look good for me seeing the ring ceremony. But if any of you have an extra opening day ticket, write me. We'll make a deal. I have Yankee games. And a shiny Kennedy half-dollar, if you wanna swap for that, Bobby Brady-style.

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