“Last year, when the Sox won the World Series…”

I’ve been practicing saying that for a couple of days. Sounds good, doesn’t it? Yesterday, we all flipped the calendar over to January 2005. Before looking ahead, let’s take a look back, shall we?

There were so many stories on and off the field that made big headlines. A-Rod coming, then not coming, then going to the Yankees. Day to day injuries that last half a season. An icon being traded away and Gold Glovers patrolling the Fenway infield. High and tight pitches and glove sandwiches and bats thrown at umpires and little red bats, American flags, little people, giant bobblehead dolls and bloody socks. Frustration, elation, pain, sacrifice, anger, hope and joy. And finally, redemption and euphoria.

2004 was the year of the Red Sox. They made history. They made believers out of even the most cynical. Most of all, they made beautiful memories for a Nation of fans, young and old. And for all of that, Thank You Red Sox.

2004 was also the birth of Surviving Grady. What started as an outlet for two fans’ grief and/or happiness (depending on the day), has become a haven, a meeting place for an amazing bunch of passionate, witty, intelligent (and sometimes bizarre and scandalous) Red Sox diehards. The support and comments we get here at the web site made an already memorable season so much more. And for that, Thank You Grady Survivors.

2005 will no doubt be full of rollercoaster emotions, cheering, crying, swearing and Yankee-hating. What happens between pitchers and catchers reporting (in about 36 days!) and the final out of the World Series, who can say? For better or worse, Red and I will be here. Trying to add to the highs or ease the pain of the lows or just ramble on about robots or nuts or ass-pressed-to-the-TV-screen. I hope you’ll be here with us. There will be one more look at the 2004 season, but I will let my man Red tell you all about it. Tomorrow.