Wow... The Red Sox are going back to the World Series for the 2nd time in 4 years. My very first year here in Boston, the then "Idiots" beat the Yankees in the ALCS, coming from behind with a 0-3 deficit & starting from the 4th game of that series, they went on to win 8 in a row (sweeping the Cardinals in the WS afterwards) to give the city of Boston its first title since 1918. It was nuts... The entire city went crazy, as the Sox actually took the trophy in St. Louis, but I was among the thousands that poured onto the streets of Boston to chant and holler at Fenway Park that night right across from facing a couple of hundred riot police. My god it was exhilarating then, but I have to say, whenever it happens, it never gets old. My folks now live in Cleveland, and my father is a HUGE Indians fan (I'm sure he's having an ulcer today, as his beloved Tribe came so close, again). My mom used to hem Kenny Lofton's suits when he would bring them down to her store, which was located in the same building he was staying in, back in the olden days when Kenny used to play for the tribe. Those guys on the tribe though, played SO well right down to the last minute, and come on, seriously, when you're a young team like that and you get to the 7th game of the championship series, having led as much as 3 games to 1, then giving up the next 3 to lose the series, it's gotta be tough. However...this team will prevail again. I'm sure of it. Their core is made up of tough, young guys who play the game with a lot of class as we've all seen the last two weeks and they are the future of baseball.
As the Red Sox are headed back to the World Series, and will be hosting the Colorado Rockies (who have won a ridiculous 21 of their 22 games to get there) for the first game on Wednesday the 24th, I'll be watching the game out in Colorado. With a busy last week having played 4 consecutive concerts with the Boston Philharmonic, and as AFC's rehearsals have resumed, I got to watch only last night's game in its entirety. And as Boston and Colorado are playing for the final glory, I go back to my former neighborhood to see old friends and also to make some music. Just ironic though, that these 2 teams are in the autumnal classic, because all my friends in Boulder, watched me scream in agony in 2003, when the Red Sox were losers in the very same American League Championship Series against the New York Yankees, losing in the final decisive game 7. I probably will never forget what it felt like to see Aaron Boone's home run that last game, but in retrospect, it was all just the beginning of (perhaps...knock on wood) a dynasty not too dissimilar from when Boston celebrated its 3 titles in the 1915-1918 stretch.
One of the news anchors last night talked about how their kids won't know the pain in waiting for their team to get to the World Series, as it is now the 2nd time in the last 4 years, that they think, this happens all the time. A thwarted generation gap. My friend Jake's grandfather never got to see his Boston team participate in the final dance before he passed away, and that was the norm around here for a long while. Something is in the air in Boston these few years. Not that sports define the era of a city (though so many of the times, it would seem that way), but there is an energy here I've not quite felt in the other places I've had the fortune of making a home. And I am grateful for being Here in the Now, and it is so very exciting. We can officially now say that A Far Cry was founded on the year that the Boston Red Sox made its second trip to the World Series in 89 years.
Baseball is a team sport, and playing in an orchestra of 16, I always see the comparisons of the team work, as one can in both fields. Though my baseball career never quite took off like my violin chops, but never the less, it is all the more important to achieve something greater as a team than the individual glory, allowing that unified voice to become a visceral force. And we all work so hard at it...My team or Manny's. If I had to give a shout out to anyone though, in this year's trip to the World Series run for the Red Sox, it would have to be the manager, Terry Francona. Tito, as everyone around here calls him, never quit believing in his players, in the time when they were slumping, dropping balls, giving up runs, he stuck with those guys to quietly give them their confidence back, and to display the kind of loyalty that is rarely seen in such a high profile business like baseball. That trust is where the real love comes through to enliven our days, and these sweet victories get Jonathan Papelbon dancing without a care in the world at 2am in the morning.