October 21, 2004
That was the name of the song played by the British Army band when General Cornwallis surrendered to General Washington at the Battle of Yorktown on October 19, 1781 -- only one calendar date earlier than the stupendous victory by the underdog Red Sox in the Bronx last night. How can such a thing have happened?? In my view, there were three main factors: reliable batting through the entire Boston lineup, solid pitching (when it really counted, at least), and gritty team spirit. I had wondered how the Yankees would manage to win in the championships without a first-rate pitching staff this year, and the consequences of that gap are now obvious. David Ortiz obviously earned the ALCS MVP award, but it was the down-on-his-luck "caveman" Johnny Damon who provided the necessary power (six RBIs) last night, with TWO homers, including a squeaker of a grand slam and a huge blast into the upper deck. What a well-timed rally on his part! Last year I felt a certain charitable sympathy for that perpetually frustrated team from Boston, but this year was different. During September they clearly established themselves as worthy contenders to the American League pennant. Even after their early losses in the ALCS, I thought they would end up with a respectable showing, but even I couldn't imagine the record-smashing comeback they pulled off in the last four games. Will this triumph help Boston fans to get over their hatred and resentment of the Bronx Bombers, at long last? Will it lead to national reconciliation and promote world peace?? Well, at least now I may be able to wear my Yankees cap without fear when I finally get a chance to see a game in Fenway Park. In the mean time, I will be cheering the Red Sox on in the World Series, confidently and whole-heartedly. That being said, I feel the need to repeat what I wrote about the Florida Marlins victory in last year's World Series: "I hate spunk!"
I've redone the panoramic (spliced-together) photo of the back side of Wrigley Field, and have added large versions of the two other photos on that page. Stil pending are diagram revisions to show how that historic stadium evolved over the early decades of its existence.