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Road Trip to Montreal

In July, 2001, I traveled to Montreal with my family for the Red Sox series against the Expos. We had a great time at the three games, as we joined thousands of other New Englanders in turning la Stade Olympique into "Fenway du Nord." The pictures I took are below.

Olympic Stadium was built to hold the 1976 Olympics. It was originally open, and had real grass during the two-week event. Artificial turf was installed before the Expos began playing there, and it was permanently covered during the 1980's. This was my first trip to a domed stadium, and it had all the charisma (or lack thereof) that I had expected to find.

Olympic Stadium They play baseball here?

The first game was on Sunday, and the Expos were celebrating the Fête de Youppi, the "birthday" of their mascot, Youppi. Fans were allowed on the field before the game, and instead of batting practice, we arrived at our seats to see the field full of fire engines. In the concourse under the seats, there was also a dunking booth with a disco ball hanging over it. I'm not sure what any of that had to do with baseball, but it was certainly unlike any other ballpark I had been to!

It was amazing how many Red Sox fans were there. The Expos are averaging about 8,000 fans per game this year, and Sunday had a Fenway-sized crowd of 32,965! Pedro, Nomar, and Manny T-shirts were everywhere we looked, and it seemed every fan had brought a "Jerry Remy" sign. Hideo Nomo pitched the first day, and I brought along the Japanese K-card that WEEI had been handing out at Fenway the previous weekend. The game itself got off to an ominous start, when Nomo allowed a single to the first batter he faced, and then a homer to the second. The Red Sox were able to pull to 2-1 in the second inning, when third baseman Chris Stynes hit a solo shot of his own. The Sox took the lead in the third, scoring two runs on three hits and a sac fly. Nomo allowed another homer in the fourth, as Montreal tied the game up at 3-3.

Nomo on the mound

The Red Sox scored three runs in the fifth, thanks to another hit by Stynes and Brian Daubach's two-run double. With two outs, Nomo singled, becoming the first Sox pitcher to get a hit this season. He almost picked up an RBI, but Daubach was gunned down at the plate as he tried to score from second. When the Expos pulled to within 6-5 in the bottom of the sixth, Nomo was taken out in favor of reliever Rich Garces. "El Guapo" pitched well enough to get out of the inning, but he was not done for the day. After Manny Ramirez doubled to start the Red Sox' seventh, Stynes belted his second homer of the day, collecting his third hit and fourth RBI, and making the score 8-5 Boston. Daubach and Doug Mirabelli singled, and with one out, the pitcher's spot was due up. El Guapo was going to bat! With a stadium full of Red Sox fans cheering widly, Garces came to the plate.

Garces at the plate  In this picture, a fan's sign expresses the hopes of Red Sox Nation, as they give their favorite portly pitcher a standing ovation.

For more pictures, please go on to...
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This page and all photos copyright © 2001 by Kristen D. Cornette.