MUSIC - Tessie by the Dropkick Murphy's
Photographed in 1976, 1978, 1995 and 2002 using film.
Fenway Park - Opened on April 20, 1912 and is still standing.
Location - 4 Yawkey Way Boston, Massachusetts Bounded by Landsdowne St., Van Ness St., Ipswich St., Brookline Ave.
This page of Fenway is dedicated to my mom "Ronnie" 1923-1992. She was born in Lowell Massachusetts, and raised in Bridgewater and Brockton. It is also dedicated to my dad "Bill" (1924-1995). Dad was not a baseball fan, but in 1976 (for my high school graduation present) he took us 3000 miles to the east coast to celebrate the bicentennial. And both he and my Mom made sure that this life long Red Sox fan got to Fenway park.
The first set of photos are from that very first game I went to at Fenway, July 11, 1976. It seems like only yesterday, but up until then, that was the biggest thrill in my life. Thanks Mom and Dad!
One more note, when my Mom lived in Brockton, my grandmother used to talk to hall of fame catcher Mickey Cochrane as he jogged by their house. Mickey was born in Bridgewater and raised in Brockton.
Fenway Park....the green monstah, Williamsburg, the Citgo sign, the Pesky pole, canvas alley, the Fisk pole, the triangle in centerfield, the belly in right, Duffy's cliff, all quirks of a living legend.
Located in the back bay section of Boston, Fenway has stood at the crossroads of Lansdowne Street, Brookline Avenue, Jersey Street (now known as Yawkey way), Van Ness Street and Ipswich Street since 1912. It was scheduled to open on April 18, 1912, but rain forced the postponement till April 20, 1912. Fenway opened the same day Tiger stadium opened, and 5 days after the Titanic sunk. Fenway was considered older than Tiger stadium (even though they opened the same day) because of the 1 hour time difference.
It has seen 3 all star games (1946, 1960 and 1999) and has been the site of 11 world series. The world series in 2004 ended the 86 year so called "curse of the bambino." IDIOT Red Sox owner Harry Frazee sold his best player, Babe Ruth, to the Yankees in 1919 for $100,000 to help finance his production of "No No Nanette." The so called curse FINALLY ended after 86 LONG years. The Red Sox came close to ending it 3 times, but ultimately lost the 7th game of the world series. In 2004 the Red Sox were down 3 games to 0 in the ALCS against their hated rival the New York Yankees. They were down to their last 3 outs. Dave Roberts pinch ran for Kevin Millar who walked, and stole second. He then scored on a Bill Mueller single to tie the game. Then in the bottom of the 12th, David Ortiz hit a 2 run home run off Paul Quantrill to send the Sox home winners, and propel them to 3 more victories and a birth in the World Series. The 2004 World Series was a 4 game sweep for the Red Sox. The victims were the St. Louis Cardinals. Fenway was also the site of arguably the greatest world series game ever played. It happened on October 21, 1975. The Red Sox were playing the Cincinnati Reds. It was a see saw game and the Reds had a 6-3 lead with 2 out in the bottom of the 8th inning. Bernie Carbo was pinch hitting for Roger Moret. He took one of the worst hacks at a pitch I have ever seen, fouling it off. The next pitch from Rawley Eastwick was sent rocketing into the centerfield bleachers for a game tying 3 run home run. The game went on into the 12th inning when Carlton Fisk sent a Pat Darcy fastball screaming towards the left field foul pole. He was seen running down first waiving the ball fair. After he touched home plate, the Fenway organist, John Kiley, started playing the Hallelujah chorus. Even though the Sox lost the series the next night, this game will last forever. It didn't take the Red Sox long to win another worlds championship. In 2007, the Red Sox swept the Angels in the ALDS, and came back from a 3 games to 1 situation to beat Cleveland to advance to the world series. Just like in 2004, the Red Sox swept their national league opponents. This time, they beat the Colorado Rockies who were in their first ever world series.
Fenway has had many oddities. First was Duffy's cliff, named after Red Sox outfielder Duffy Lewis. From 1912 thru the 1933 season, there was a 10 foot high incline in front of the then 25 foot high left field wall. Lewis mastered the incline so well that it ended up being known as Duffy's cliff. By far the best player ever to master all the angles and dead spots of the green monster was Carl Yastrzemski. Yaz knew every quirk of the 37 foot high wall. Fenway also has the manually operated scoreboard at the base of the monster. Between the out of town scores, there are the initials TAY and JRY displayed in Morse code. It is a memorial to former Red Sox owner Tom Yawkey and Jean Yawkey. The right field foul pole was officially named the "Pesky pole" on September 27, 2006. Johnny Pesky had a knack for hitting fly balls down the 302 foot right field line. On June 14, 2005, the left field foul pole was renamed the "Fisk pole" for former Red Sox catcher and hall of famer Carlton Fisk.
Two Red Sox legends never played for the Sox. The first was baritone PA announcer Sherm Feller. Unlike today where you get PA announcers SCREAMING their hometown player introductions (you should hear the one in San Francisco when Barry Bonds comes up), Feller calmly went about his business announcing the players. From 1967 to 1993, Sherm would welcome people to Fenway with his familiar "Ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls, welcome to Fenway Park." Sadly, the Red Sox golden voice passed away in 1994 at the age of 75. There will never be another one like him. John Kiley was another legend that never played an inning for the Sox. BUT he did play. The organ that is. He is the answer to a trivia question. Albeit a trick question. Who is the only guy to play for the Red Sox, Celtics, and Bruins? From 1953 - 1989 John Kiley played the organ at Fenway park. He did double duty at the old Boston Garden too. Kiley passed away in 1993.
Baseball was not the only sport played at Fenway. The old Boston Redskins (now the Washington Redskins) played at Fenway. The Boston Patriots called Fenway home from 1963 thru 1968.
Thru the 95 years now, Fenway has seen its share of greats. Smokey Joe Wood, Ernie Shore, Cy Young, Tris Speaker, Dutch Leonard, Babe Ruth, Jimmy Collins, Harry Hooper, Joe Cronin, Jimmy Foxx, Mel Parnell, Rick Ferrell, Lefty Grove, Dom DiMaggio, Bobby Doerr, Dick "the Monster" Radatz, Tony Conigliaro, Rico Petrocelli, Carlton Fisk, Fred Lynn, Jim Rice, Wade Boggs, Dwight Evans, Bernie Carbo, Mo Vaughn, Pedro Martinez, Manny Ramirez, David "big papi" Ortiz, YAZ, and the greatest hitter who ever lived, Ted Williams, all played at Fenway for the Red Sox.
The new ownership has made several great changes to the old girl, and lets hope that she will last another 100 years. LONG LIVE FENWAY PARK! Enjoy!
The first view I ever had of Fenway park... looking down Lansdowne Street and the back of the green monstah. July 1976 (the quality of the photos have deteriorated after 31 years... they were all color corrected)
The main entrance of Fenway park.. looking at Yawkey way... the old M and K deli is in the foreground.
You can see the Jimmy Fund sign above the right field roof. July 1976
The pressbox and broadcast booth. July 1976
The famed "Green Monster". A mere 310 feet from home plate. July 1976
Another view of the Monster.
The "luxury" boxes above third base in 1976.
A good view of the first base stands. July1976
A good pregame view of the bleachers in right. July 1976
Looking at the right field roof.... no one has ever hit a ball over the right field roof. That is the late Craig Kusick of the Twins next to the cop at the railing of the stands. July 1976
Looking at centerfield. In the background, the building to the left is the Hancock building and the one to the right is the Prudential center or "Pru" as it as known. July 1976
The light standard down the first base line, and the sky boxes. July 1976
The third base coach for the Red Sox is future manager Don Zimmer ... aka Popeye. July 1976
Baseball heaven.... a homeplate view of Fenway Park and Carlton Fisk. July 1976
Another view of the green monster.
A hot and humid overcast day and a view of the CF scoreboard. July 1976
A good view of the centerfield bleachers.
You can see Rico Petrocelli at third and on the mound is future hall of famer Fergie Jenkins. July 1976
Bill Singer walking off the field after being taken out. July 1976
Fred Lynn circles the bases after a home run. July 1976
Fred Lynn crosses home plate after his dinger. July 1976
Yaz and Lynn in the outfield. July 1976
A close play at the plate.
Yaz at bat..... Yes he was my favorite player.
A pretty packed house for a hot humid Sunday in Boston. July 1976
YAZ! running out to left field. July 1976
Yaz running off the field after the win. 1976 was my first trip to Fenway that ended with a 5-3 victory for the Sox over the Minnesota Twins. I have to thank my parents for getting me to the game. My cousins who lived in Providence Rhode Island were going to take us to see the queen of England in some parade for the bicentennial. I in NO way wanted to see the freaking queen... so my parents and cousins went to see the queen and I went to Fenway. Seems like a fair trade off to me!