And it’s because of games like that. Opening Day at Fenway. Our hearts already pumping overtime and waves of Bud Light crashing through our veins. The Most Important Day on the Calendar, rivaled perhaps only by Christmas and the anniversary of the day Lisa Geeroot from Pawtucket showed us her knockers. And The Commander didn’t disappoint. That guy we saw in last year’s ALCS? Apparently wedgied to death and stuffed in a clubhouse hamper. The guy on the mound yesterday was the real deal, besting Small Game James, striking out 10 and giving up a mere two hits en route to his first opening day win in a Boston uniform. It was a performance he’d no doubt been dreaming of since last October, and it was staggeringly beautiful, executed with precision and passion and at least one F-bomb as he stormed off the mound after the top of the sixth.
There was plenty more goodness where that came from. Pedroia going yard in his first at bat. Varitek going yard after the world’s most excruciatingly embarrassing off-season. Papelbon striking out two of the three batters he faced to close things out. Hell, we even got to see the return of Mazel Tough, as Gabe Kapler himself took a bow for the Fenway Faithful. The only awkward moment came when Jim Rice and Ted Kennedy pulled an impromptu production of Driving Miss Daisy in a golf cart. Everything else? Pure gold.
Hell, I even got reacquainted with my buddies from the Manny’s World Famous Hardware commercials. How I’ve missed you guys.
So, to recap: A healthy Beckett coming up big just a day after the Yank’s billion dollar horse went tits-up in his debut. The Elf still wielding a feisty bat. A pocketed “W”, and Jon Lester, whose admission into the Mighty Avengers should be confirmed any day now, on the mound today.
Top it all off with a special video message from Ms. Amalie, recorded specifically for me (or so the voices in my head say). As my man Bill Blazejowski once asked, “Is this a great country or what?”