Monthly Archives: May 2009

Ortiz mashes his first home run of season, receives creepy letter from John Henry

BOSTON, Mass.–Through an exclusive club source, Fenway Pastoral has obtained text from a letter left inside David Ortiz’s locker following the Red Sox’ 8-3 victory Wednesday night. The letter was signed J. H. and is believed to be from lovestruck team owner John Henry.

Dear Papi,

Red Sox fans need a muse. Well, they don’t really. They don’t need nearly as much as they generally think they do. A man is greedy. Greedy for what he doesn’t think he has and what he thinks he wants.

We wouldn’t have won two World Championships without your charismatic presence pushing us. And your home runs were one of the most important byproducts.

So you will ask, “Why are you writing this?” Because your gorgeous, long-anticipated home run stroke in the fifth inning tonight gave a cool spin to this little blue planet from my vantage point.

Fenway feted your first home run of the season tonight and the skies opened. The sun emerged and created a giant rainbow between the city and the park. We were transfixed.

You only saw it if you were in the right place. I was in the right place when I noticed you.

Outside of our occasional, awkward on-field encounters after big wins, I barely know you. I don’t have any illusions about capturing your heart. But the world is brighter, better, lighter and warmer when an owner imbues a slugger he knows—even tabula rasa—with the attributes I believe reside in you. It’s the small things that ultimately matter. The subtle things.

I am honest. I don’t play games. And I see no reason not to say that I’ve been smitten by you and you’ve done this team a great service over the past seven years.

You’ve very innocently made our world brighter, better, lighter and warmer.

So thanks.

No response is necessary because a true Red Sox fan doesn’t need nearly as much as he thinks he does.

Amen, Mr. Henry. Amen.

After Manny Ramirez steroid revelations, 12-year-old boy steals DeLorean, travels back in time

MELROSE, Mass.–Residents of a small, quiet city seven miles north of Boston have been shaken to their core over the last six days as news spreads that a 12-year-old boy has gone missing after apparently setting out on a Back to the Future-style time-traveling mission to prevent the Manny Ramirez steroid scandal.  

Harold and Martha Chavez last saw their youngest son, Joseph, on Thursday night after watching him play left field during a Little League game. (He wears No. 24, of course.) Upon returning home, their son learned the news that Ramirez had been suspended for 50 games by Major League Baseball for steroid use.

As lifelong Red Sox fans, the Chavez family was understandably devastated to hear the news, especially their young son.

“Joey really took it hard,” said his mother. “He kept talking about how the Red Sox’ world championships were retroactively tarnished. Before he went to bed, he said something about going 88 miles per hour in a DeLorean to go back in time and stop Manny from taking steroids. I just thought he was really tired or maybe coming down with a cold or the pig flu.”

Unbeknownst to Mrs. Chavez, her son’s time travel talk may have been more than just a Hollywood fantasy. 

“He fell asleep holding this picture he had taken of Manny Ramirez clutching the World Series trophy on one of the Duck Boats during the 2004 parade,” said his father, Harold. “When I came into his room this morning, my son was gone and there was just this void in the picture. Manny’s on the Duck Boat holding thin air. The trophy is gone…”

Not coincidentally, an old DeLorean sports car was reported missing on Friday morning from Sal’s Auto Body in downtown Melrose. The Chavezes do not know whether their son managed to penetrate the space/time continuum. (Plutonium is not a known commodity anywhere on the North Shore.) Nor do they have any idea which year he aimed to visit or how he planned to prevent Manny’s use of performance enhancing drugs. 

“I just hope he goes back far enough to make sure (the Red Sox titles in) 2004 and 2007 still count,” said Chavez’s 18-year-old brother, Brian. “Right now we’re just kind of in this limbo. Are the World Series titles tarnished? No one knows for sure. Plus, I haven’t seen my brother in five days so it’d be nice if he came home.”

It has undoubtedly been a trying week in the Chavez household as well as within the entire Melrose community.

“Those championships were so important to so many people around here,” said Regina Rice, 72, on her way out of the dry cleaners. “To have those banners be tainted, tarnished or taken away would just be awful. My husband died in 2006 and I’m dreading the day I’ll have to visit his grave to tell him he never actually saw the Red Sox win the World Series legitimately. This young boy going missing just exacerbates the pain.”

Inside a local drugstore, Richard McCarthy, 39, lamented, “All our memories are ruined. The 2004 season wasn’t what we thought it was…Nothing matters anymore. This missing kid is our only hope. What am I going to do with all the newspaper clippings I saved from that year? Are all my old copies of the Boston Globeobselete?”

Concern over mementos from past World Series victories appears to be justified. In addition to an alarming acceleration of yellowing (or aging) of his Globe newspaper clippings, McCarthy claims other prized possessions have become flawed. “I have this ball that was signed by the entire 2007 Red Sox team. Everybody signed that thing…even the scrubs like Royce Clayton and Bryan Corey. But last week, I noticed some of the signatures were smudged and are either no longer legible or barely visible.”

When asked if she thought her son would eventually return heroically to present day as Marty McFly did in the famed 1985 movie, Mrs. Chavez became noticeably distressed.

“I’m with Stephen Hawking. I’ve always been skeptical of time travel,” she says, blinking back tears. “But my son has seen that movie about 50 times so maybe he’ll be able to figure it out. Who knows?”

When told the future (and, in turn, the present) is ultimately altered at the end of the famous movie, Mrs. Chavez breathes a small sigh of relief. Reality quickly returns, however. A moment later, she turns away to again check the picture of Manny taken by her son during the 2004 victory parade. Alas, the trophy – like her son – has yet to reappear.

Fenway/Kenmore residents infuriated over extension of “Fenway Family Hour”

BOSTON, Mass.–Fenway and Kenmore Square area residents are livid over the Boston Red Sox’ announcement Tuesday that hour-long discounts on food concessions will continue throughout the month of May:

Fenway Family Hour, a joint effort between the Red Sox and ARAMARK, was launched in April.  During the month of May, nine popular food items will again be available at up to 50% off in price, including: Fenway Franks, pizza slices, pretzels, popcorn, cotton candy, fruit cups, veggie cups, slider boat (two sliders & fries), and Hoodsie ice cream cups.  The discount is available at all locations throughout the ballpark and there is no limit on the number of items purchased. 

It is a “first hour” provision that has residents particularly upset at the extension, which would seemingly appear to be nothing more than a gesture of good faith by the team to cash-strapped fans. The fine print within the promotion dictates that the discounts are only available for the first hour after the gates are opened (i.e. 11 a.m. to 12 p.m. for a 1 o’clock start). The undesired result, residents say, is a push by fans to arrive for games as early as possible.

“These games are all-day events now,” said 43-year-old Maryanne Donahue as she sat outside her apartment on Park Drive. “Fans are showing up in the area four or five hours before the game even starts so they can get a parking spot and tailgate or go to the bar for a couple hours before the gates open. It’s the Kentucky Derby here every night now.”

Ted Crane, a 25-year resident of the Kenmore Square area, says he’s also noticed an earlier influx of Red Sox fans on game nights this season as compared to prior years.

“These families with a bunch of kids are showing up with their hats and jerseys and novelty license plates…They gotta make sure they’re inside the park for the full hour of half-price food,” says Crane. “And I’ll tell you something else, they’re eating like it’s the Last Supper. Ice cream, hot dogs — sliders, for crissakes, sliders! At Fenway Park! — I’ve had to hose down vomit on the sidewalk in front of my building almost every day.”

As many as 100 Fenway/Kenmore residents have banded together in petitioning Boston Mayor Thomas Menino to order the Red Sox to cease its “Fenway Family Hour” plans for May.

“One month of this was enough,” says Maura Mastarrono, a superintendent of a building on Boylston St. near the park. “With the weather getting warmer in May, I can only imagine fans are going to be filing into the city even earlier in the day. The Landsdowne crowd? I see them strolling into those watering holes at 9 a.m. now so they can get a buzz going before scarfing down a bunch of cheap food.”

City officials did not return repeated requests for comment. However, a Boston Police Department spokesperson assured Fenway Pastoral that, “We have procedures in place for controlling public gluttony and ensuring that the presence of delicious, affordably priced food is not abused.”