Sure, it's rainy and miserable here in Boston, but it's freakin' opening day!! Not a moment too soon as the two Saturday games didn't come close to living up to their billing and tonight marks the end of college hoops for the year.
Watched part of the Cardinals - Mets game last night with my six year old who suddenly remembered how much he liked watching the games. We had it on for about 5.6 seconds when he asked where Pujols was. I was shocked A: that he remembered his name and B: that he remembered he played for the Cardinals. I've officially created a third generation baseball junkie.
Six year old proceeded to comment on the following:
- Where was Pedro? (don't know. I think he's still hurt. Why do you ask?)
- Doesn't Pedro play for the Mets now? (what the fuck, how does he remember this shit?)
- After watching Jose Reyes make a good play look routine, he states 'I like that guy, but his hat is too low'
- When do the Red Sox play? (Tomorrow night, meaning tonight)
- Wanna go to the game? (Can't. I think they're in Kansas City. They don't play in Fenway until later) Oh.
I ask 'Why? You want to go to some games this summer?' Long pause. Staring at me as if he's trying to remember something. Longer pause. 'You don't have to', I add, 'just wondering if you would want to.' 'Yeah, I think I would, but if it rains I don't want to walk around like last time.'
Backstory: The last game I took him to wound up being the first game of a double header. Unfortunately, it rained that morning and afternoon (as well as previous night - which is why there was a double header in the first place) and the game kept getting pushed back, pushed back and pushed back some more. We wound up coming in to Boston around 11 am for the early game and having to wait until almost six before it got started.
In the meantime, I touched base with some friends who lived in the area and spent time in Starbucks (where I concluded friend's boyfriend had to be gay by the way he crossed his legs), Red Sox stores (where son got a Wally that straps around his neck with velcro hands) and hanging at our friend's apartment where he chased their two cats around for about 2 hours. Meanwhile, I'm watching the news and calling wifey to find out if the game was cancelled and basically trying to plan things on the fly. Needless to say, the poor kid was exhausted.
But the game made up for it all. This is why Fenway, despite being a complete shithole with uncomfortable seats and no legroom, has such sentimental value for Bostonians (and, I'm sure others). We had the best seats we've ever had. Along the right field line, 3 rows back and right on the aisle so he could walk right up and stand by the field. He was in his glory. Saying hi to Trot every time he came past him between innings. Yelling at Manny just because he thought it was funny and Manny is one of his favorite players. Constantly asking why Papi didn't come onto the field with the rest of the team. He still doesn't understand the DH role and I've failed in my attempts to explain it. Plus, it was Jon Lester's first big league start and he instantly became my son's favorite player. He loves the guy.
Before I forget, my boy's favorite Sox players. In order:
Manny - Papi (tie for first)
Kevin Youkilis (he likes yelling 'Youk!!' at the TV)
Coco Crisp (for obvious reasons)
Trot Nixon (haven't told him he's on the Indians yet. Figured I would wait until he asks)
Tim Wakefield (he practices throwing knuckleballs with a wiffleball)
You can see that opening day is more than just a sporting event for me now. It's taken on much more emotional heft since my son started following along with me. Nothing gives me greater pleasure than having him sit right next to me on the couch while we watch. Or taking him to games and have him ask me all sorts of questions.
Too bad for him I can't properly explain why one league has a designated hitter and one doesn't.
Today's distraction: Peruse the Red Sox Active Roster. I'm shocked that Kyle Snyder is 6'8. That's freaking tall. Also, I keep forgetting how young Josh Beckett is. I hope he kicks ass this year. Imagine him and Dice-K hitting their primes together. And we have them both for the next 4 years. Opening Day - only day where giddy enthusiasm is completely warranted.