Monday, August 10, 2009
If it's August, it's Red Sox Nation!
It almost - almost - doesn't matter that, over the weekend, the Boston Red Socks slipped from tied for first place with the NY Yankess into six and a half games behind in the division and tied for the Wild Card Lead.
Okay, okay. So, The Red Sox are now 8 for 76 in the last two games, covering 24 innings. They have not advanced a runner to third base in the last 23 innings.
There is no panic in Red Sox Nation this morning.
Division titles are not won in early August. There are too many games left to play for that.
In two days, my 'Sox' will be playing Detroit and they'll start to make their way back up again. The Yankess just got lucky last night, is all.
Like the month of August itself, my 'Sox' are just warming up - just starting to get really hot.
I was born and brought up in Massachusetts. I know the Holy Ritual of Summer Baseball, especially as played by the Boston Red Sox.
Therefore, I know a little something about 'hope'.
I grew up learning the mantra: "Yeah, well, just wait until next year."
I am no Big Sports Jock. I really don't understand all the hype about football and while I like to watch an occasional basketball game - especially the WNBA games (two-time Olympic medalist Yolanda Griffith is retiring - are you kidding me?) - I really only follow the Boston Red Sox.
Oh, and the NY Yankees - but only when they are playing the Boston Red Sox.
Truth be told, I really don't even watch the games much until August. In my mind, it's part of what it means to be August. Indeed, I wouldn't know what month it was unless I could walk down the street and hear car radio stations tuned to the Game or walk by houses and see the flicker of TV screens as the melodious sounds of the announcer's voice over the constant roar of the crowd found its way to my ears.
Nothing will get my heart rate to increase faster than hearing, "Bottom of the seventh, bases loaded, two balls, two strikes. Tied score: 3-3. A-Rod is up at bat. Rameriz is looking tired. Clay Buchholz is warming up in the pen. . . . "
Oh, man! Where at the hot dogs? Yes, two. Nah, no beer. I'll take a Diet Pepsi or Coke, though. Mustard and onion, please. Don't forget the chopped onion. Last time you forgot the onion and the Sox lost. My boys get jinxed if there's no chopped onion on the dogs. I got my lucky Red Sox red socks on, so don't mess this up. And potato chips - if the Sox lose, I'll have heartburn all night from those fries.
It's been called "The National Pastime". In some places, it's the "Local Obsession."
Me? It just wouldn't be August without Red Sox baseball.