OK, You Win

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I’m a Red Sox fan.

In that capacity, I’m small-minded enough to wonder (churlishly) whether Pedroia should be starting over Cano in the All-Star Game. You’ve got to give it to Cano based on his .917 OPS. And the truth of Pedroia is that you have to watch 130 or so of his games every year to see all the little things he does remarkably well, in  ways that don’t necessarily show up in any stats column. And I don’t watch Cano that way, so maybe he’s every bit as good.

That’s not the point. It’s just an example of how hard it is for a Boston fan to let go of atavistic responses to the Yankees. And atavistic is just what they are. Yankee-hating hasn’t made any sense since the Steinbrenner era. How do you hate a class act like Jeter?

But this story about Mo Rivera actually made me verklempt.  We judge the great on how they treat the little people. This is pretty hard to top.

 Mariano Rivera 2009

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5 thoughts on “OK, You Win

  1. Bob W

    I hate the Yankees but I do admire Jeter as a great player that I wish had been a Red Sox. When Rivera got hurt last year I felt so bad for him because he is the best reliever the game has ever seen and he always seemed to be a good guy. I hoped that he would be able to come back for a final season and he has done just that in the same form that we will all remember him. Oh, and wouldn’t it have been nice to have seen him in Red Sox uniform for all these years. Cheers Mariano!

  2. Lynne

    I am a Red Sox fan.

    I have lived and died with the exasperation of being a life-long fan of my beloved red-soxed boys of summer, all along knowing in the back of my mind that we are basically routing for laundry. Johnny Damon becomes a Yankee and suddenly the Red Sox icon and hero of 2004 becomes reviled when he dons pinstripes. Ditto Wade Boggs. And just last year, Kevin Youklis. They are the same players who made us stand and cheer -or cry – at Fenway: but clean shaven and in Yankee pinstripes, we yell “BOO! BOO!” even though they are the same guy in the Bronx that they were at Fenway.

    We’re rooting for laundry.

    I always admired Jeter and Mariano Rivera: both are class acts, no matter what laundry they are wearing (unlike Roger Clemons, who I NEVER liked, whether he wore “RED SOX” or “YANKEES” on his uniform, my reaction to him was the same).

    My fervent hope is that, when David Ortiz retires, (if he ever does), he will do something similar to what Rivera is doing today. Because in the end, it’s the MAN, not the LAUNDRY.

  3. peter brush

    how hard it is for a Boston fan to let go of atavistic responses to the Yankees
    Being a fan is by its very nature irrational. We’re fanatics. Prejudice having been banned (or at least silenced) in most areas of modern life in the USA, we take special pleasure in just plain not liking the other team. I don’t know that I hate them, but as a Yankee fan I have especially disliked the Los Angeles Dodgers since they swept the Yanks in the 1963 World Series; atavism indeed.

    Thanks for the piece about Rivera. Not being a reader of, or even a glancer at the NYTimes I’d not have seen it. One of the things about the NHL is that the players seem to be regular guys. Mariano is more unusual in the baseball field, particularly in the New York baseball racket, in that he is a regular guy. But, he’s also a real mensch. It’s been a great pleasure to root for him, and it’s marvelous to see him perform so well as he closes his career. (Although he’s in my dog house at the moment because of his bull pen failure back on July 6 against the Orioles.)
    Leyland says he’ll play tonight. I’m hoping he gets a chance to close the game. God Bless Mariano.
    “It’s incredible,” said the Pirates’ Jason Grilli. “I learned something; that he’s given up less [walk-off home runs] than men have stepped on the moon. You throw numbers around like that with what he’s accomplished. I might have 30-something saves, but there’s no way I’m going to touch that record of his.”

    “A lot of broken bats,” the Red Sox’s David Ortiz said. “A lot of … man, I’ll tell you, Mariano, to me, I think he’s in the top three best pitchers that ever played the game. The guy had one pitch, man. Come on. One pitch! And nobody can hit him.”

  4. Bill Katz

    I’m not into sports but I sure would be a die hard fan if I had entered into a business deal with a team. And if needed, I would don a set of pom poms and jump up and down as the revenue came rolling in.

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