They’ve been playing in the old yard for 100 years now, but rarely has a win felt more urgent or welcome for the Sox and their unsettled fansFrom there, it's a standard game recap and one funny anecdote:
It was a soft opening, played one week before the baseball bacchanalia promised when the New York Yankees come to town for the official 100th birthday of every New Englander’s summer home, Fenway Park.
Red Sox warriors Jason Varitek and Tim Wakefield, decorated veterans of great days at Fenway, emerged from the Green Monster to throw ceremonial first pitches. “You’ve Made Me So Very Happy’’ by Blood, Sweat & Tears blared on the speaker system while the recently retired batterymates made their way toward the mound.
Good choice of a tune. After seven-plus months of chaos and disappointment, the Red Sox on Friday finally reminded us that we can still have good times at the ballpark that has become the franchise’s centerpiece star. Josh Beckett ignored some pregame boos and stuffed the Tampa Bay Rays on five hits over eight innings in a 12-2 Red Sox breakout win. The Sox pounded 16 hits off five Tampa Bay pitchers.
Fans walking from Kenmore Square up Brookline Avenue early in the day got a laugh when they saw the sign over Popeyes that read, “Four out of five pitchers prefer our chicken BEST.’’