October 31, 2013

Maine fans, others flock to the scene, game tickets or not

The excited members of Red Sox Nation had a date with history

By Steve Solloway ssolloway@pressherald.com

(Continued from page 1)

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Friends Adam Taylor of Falmouth, Jay Cross of Cape Elizabeth and Dan Lay of Brunswick mingle on Brookline Avenue outside of Fenway Park before Game 6. The Mainers said they came to see history, shorten their bucket lists and simply have a good time.

Gabe Souza/Staff Photographer

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Gabe Souza/Staff Photographer Lance Richmond of Pittsfield stands with his 14-year-old twins, Carter and Emily, on Landsdowne Street outside Fenway Park before the start of Game 6. “We’re all in,” Richmond said. “The Red Sox are winning it tonight. We don’t have tickets for Game 7.”

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Mary Ellen Cahill walked by at the corner of Yawkey Way and Brookline Avenue. She was easy to spot in her wedding dress and Santa Claus beard, with a sign hanging from her neck: “Marry me, Papi. Will sign a pre-nup (prenuptual agreement).”

She didn’t have a ticket to the game. Her husband of 20 years, Michael, was waiting for her at home in Canton, Mass.

“He knows I’m here, but he doesn’t know anything about this,” she said, gesturing to her dress and beard. “He’s Irish. He doesn’t know anything about baseball. We’ll watch the game together on the couch when I get back home.”

She bought the wedding dress for $9.99 at a Goodwill store, and bought the beard at a party store. Her leather boots didn’t match the dress, but who cared?

“I’m a nurse (and the mother of a Northeastern University student studying in Australia this semester) and sometimes I just need to vent, do something crazy,” she said.

All in fun, with a touch of madness.

Lines to get into the bars and restaurants that surround Fenway Park were about 50 deep. At one point, the wait was up to 90 minutes.

Like Mary Ellen Cahill, I couldn’t get into the game without a media credential or a ticket. I walked to a hotel lobby three blocks from the stadium. Bit by bit, Red Sox fans found their way to seats in front of two big-screen televisions. We were joined by several members of the Boston Police Department, biding their time until after the game.

“All day, this city has just been electric,” said Elaine Ray, who had arrived in Boston with her husband many hours earlier. They wore their Red Sox gear. “No one talks to each other in an elevator. Today, they did,” she said. “People turned and asked: Are you going to the game tonight? People were smiling at each other all day.”

Maybe it was the giddiness that followed last year’s suffering, with the Red Sox recording their worst record since 1965. “From worst to first” was repeated, almost with the wonder of children.

Dan Lay, the fan from Brunswick, mused at how fitting it was that John Lackey, much-maligned through his first three seasons in Boston, was the Sox starting pitcher for the clincher in his fourth: “This is all about redemption, isn’t it?”

It’s about claiming baseball’s biggest prize. It’s about a Red Sox team that earned the accolades.

Sharon Worth and her brother heard that the subways would stop running at some point after the game. She didn’t care. She flew all the way across the country to see this.

“When they win, we’ll be so high we’ll walk back to Malden,” she said.

She was already celebrating.

Steve Solloway can be contacted at 791-6412 or at:ssolloway@pressherald.comTwitter: SteveSolloway

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Gabe Souza/Staff Photographer Ben Eley of Blue Hill in Maine, now a college student in Boston, celebrates on the shoulders of a friend outside Fenway Park as the Red Sox built a lead early in Game 6.


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