So I am writing this as I recover from one of the most interesting opening days in my Red Sox history. The highlight of my day yesterday besides the Red Sox win (5-0 of the Tiggers) was the standing ovation of William Joseph Buckner who threw out the ceremonial first pitch. Bill Buckner has taken a lot of crap. The insidious hatred by a “Nation” of fans so used to winning (with the Celtics, Bruins, etc) and yet so often on the doorsteps of success only to have it ripped from our grasp. Bill Buckner is one of the players who has received well more of the blame than he deserved. I guess the media (and fans) needs scapegoats like Steve Bartman, Don Denkinger, or Bill Bucker. In most of these cases, the scapegoat is never completely to blame. Bartman for example attempts to catch a ball (foul or not) that might have ended a crucial inning however if you look at the game log you will see that the Cubs had plenty of chances to stop the bleeding (just check the wiki on Steve Bartman for a complete run down) but they didn’t. In fact, they blew game 7 like game 6. Can you really blame one guy on one play for that? Its ludicrous. Buckner got the same treatment. Don’t get me wrong his error was at the worst possible time but it wasn’t to end the series. Play game 7 and win and no one remembers it. I think these scapegoats are a crutch to fans to explain losing. A crutch for players who can’t find ways to win. My personal opinion is the ’86 Red Sox were beaten by the better team.
Seeing Buckner come out to the ovation by the fans, the sins of the past washed away by 2 WS trophies in 4 years was moving to say the least. Its nice to see all the players of the past come back into the fold.
The other cool thing which I didn’t realize until this morning as that it was the first time in history that all 4 of the major Championship Trophies (Stanley Cup, Lombardi Trophy, the Larry O’Brien Trophy and the Commissioner’s Trophy)
Overall it was a very good day.