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Some Things are Best Left Unspoken

Sunday, April 18, 2010 – Fenway Park, Section 43

Rays 7, Red Sox 1

The warm weather from the last homestand was long gone by the time my next game rolled around, and the luck of the team wasn’t far behind.  The Red Sox opened a four-game series against the Rays with a cold, wet Friday night game which went into a rain delay in the middle of the ninth with the game tied.  When they weren’t able to resume, it became a suspended game, and the fans who had shivered through the whole thing didn’t even get to see their game end.  Saturday night began with the conclusion of the suspended game followed by the whole regularly-scheduled game, in front of a new set of fans.  They had to sit in equally cold and rainy conditions, past midnight, just to witness two losses.  I counted myself lucky to have tickets to the Sunday game, because I hadn’t had to experience the past two nights, and while it was still cold and rainy, at least this was a day game.

Closeup of the left field foul pole.

Closeup of the left field foul pole on a quiet, wet morning.

I got into Boston early enough to find a free parking spot at a meter on Comm. Ave.  That made me near the front of the Red Sox Nation line to go in early for batting practice.  Since it was raining, I figured they’d skip B.P., but it’s still fun to get in ½-hour before the gates open and go up on the Green Monster.  It was time to come down when the gates opened, but by then the pitchers had come out to right field to do some long-tossing, so I went over there to watch.

The door to the visitors' bullpen, 380 feet from home plate, was open as the Red Sox pitchers warmed up.

The door to the visitors' bullpen, 380 feet from home plate, was open as the Red Sox pitchers warmed up.

John Lackey pauses between tosses.

John Lackey pauses between tosses.

When the pitchers finished up, I went out to Yawkey Way.  The Red Sox Team Store outside the park has posters hanging in the second-story windows that represent that day’s starting lineup.  They were still busy hanging the posters, and it took them awhile, so I figured I’d have to come back later and see the end result.

Workers complete hanging the lineup posters in the windows above the souvenir store.

Workers complete hanging the lineup posters in the windows above the souvenir store.

Walking around to my seat in the bleachers, I got a look in “canvas alley” where the grounds crew keeps their equipment.

A wet weekend meant the grounds crew was stocking up on bags of drying agent for the infield dirt, and they had plenty of chances to use it.

A wet weekend meant the grounds crew was stocking up on bags of drying agent for the infield dirt, and they had plenty of chances to use it.

A half-hour before the start of the game, the sun came out, and the tarp was pulled off the infield.  I got out to the bleachers and dried off my seat.  But as soon as I pulled out my scorecard, the rain started again.  I headed for cover, and there was a 30-minute rain delay before they finally began.

As for the game itself, let’s see… It rained, the sun came out, and the Red Sox gave up some runs.  Then it rained some more, the sun came out again, and the Red Sox gave up some runs.  After that, there was more rain, then sun, then, well, you know…

With two outs in the fifth, the Red Sox hadn’t even managed a hit against Matt Garza.  (There was a walk in the fourth, although the runner had been erased on a double-play.)  So when Adrian Beltre banged one off the Monster, we all got excited – until he foolishly tried to stretch it to a double, and was thrown out by a mile.  That ended the inning, but with the game going as badly as it was, we all still cheered, “At least it was a hit!”

It was sunny when we moved around to Section 14, but don't let that fool you - it wasn't long before we were glad to be under cover.  (Click the image to enlarge.)

It was sunny when we moved around to Section 14, but don't let that fool you - it wasn't long before we were glad to be under cover. (Click the image to enlarge.)

At the end of the sixth, we left the bleachers in search of drier seats, winding up under cover in the Section 14 grandstand.  If we had to witness such a pathetic game, at least we should get a nice view!  It felt more windy there, so I switched to my knit hat, since I was already wearing most of the layers I had brought.

Scott Schoeneweis was the lone bright spot for the Red Sox, with two scoreless innings pitched.

Scott Schoeneweis was the lone bright spot for the Red Sox, with two scoreless innings pitched.

There wasn’t much else to be said about this game.  The Sox finally got a run on a sacrifice fly in the bottom of the ninth, but that couldn’t make up for the bad pitching, weak hitting, and sloppy defense of the first eight innings.

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