It is beginning to look like this might not be the year. But the third-place blues of the local nine have not discouraged rabid Red Sox fans from flocking to infamous virtual waiting rooms (like the one pictured below) in the hopes of scoring coveted tickets to a ‘potential’ playoff showdown with the New York Yankees or Tampa Bay Rays.
The sellout streak holds strong as Fenway Park continues to be packed to the gills this month despite Boston’s injury-derailed season, which is poised to end short of a playoff berth for the first time since 2006.
Fans like Tina from Shrewsbury do not appear fazed by the likelihood that it will all be over in less than two weeks.
“I’ve been refreshing browsers on all three of my family’s home computers,” she said Monday night—after Daisuke Matsuzaka’s lackluster five-walk performance in a 4-2 loss to the Orioles. “I figure the more computers I have going the better chance of getting tickets. People won’t be laughing when I’m drunkenly yelling at Evan Longoria from third-base box seats a month from now.”
Club employees are not certain how people continue to populate the virtual waiting areas accessible through the RedSox.com Web site. Some suspect that so-called “zombie links” from past years continue to somehow provide access to the mainframe servers, which has wreaked havoc on the operations of the site.
The initial puzzlement has quickly given way to annoyance.
“Fans: Please, for the love of Pedro, stop logging onto RedSox.com looking for playoff tickets. There are NO playoff tickets,” begged one official. “The added traffic is disrupting our ability to employ a skeleton staff for end-of-season site operations.”
It would appear that the eternally hopeful mentality of Red Sox Nation could make for a long winter.
“I’ve been calling the box office a few times a day just to check in on availability. You have to be vigilant and keep the faith,” advised David from Hanover. “I’ll never forget what happened in 2004, when I got World Series tickets ten minutes before first pitch.”
Standing just steps away from the day-of-game ticket window on Landsdowne Street, Paul from Yarmouth could be spotted rolling out a sleeping bag and using his iPhone to view his virtual waiting room status.
“Those guys who work in the box office hate me. They know I’m gonna be here every day until they release Sox-Yanks ALCS tickets,” he said. “The team holds back a certain number of seats to be sold the morning of each game and I’m gonna be here waiting when they do. Believe that.”
Club officials have resorted to asking local news outlets to repeat proclamations from earlier in the summer that the season is doomed. However, TV and radio hosts have declined thus far, reasoning that repeating their prognostications would be construed as overtly negative.
“Youk’s out…Pedroia’s out…Lackey and Beckett have been absolute disasters. I don’t know what else needs to happen,” lamented one top executive. “This sellout streak is nice, but maybe we’ve taken the whole thing a bit too far.”