4.16.2015 Pawtucket Red Sox v Rochester Red Wings (MIN) - Wide Open

Pawtucket takes it 8-7 after unlikely hero Bryce Brentz hits a walk-off home run. It's funny, I called his first strikeout but maybe this is a new guy.

I noticed a few changes at McCoy Stadium. Everything costs a little bit more and things are slightly souped up. Crowd was a little heavier on the Chipsters. Worst of all, there are giant fucking timers in the outfield and behind home plate. I really had no opinion about the 20 seconds between pitches but now I'm grossed out.

Things that are the same: Jim Martin was there. The french fries. That dude with the acoustic guitar singing GBA. Quintin Berry. Mostly everything else.


"PawSox > RISox" - a guest post by by Gus L

The MLB is a money game, the A,AA, and AAA are all training grounds and advertisers for the MLB teams they are affiliated with. I get that. I've made my peace with the MLB. Back in 1994 I swore I wouldn't watch or care again. It sounds weird that a 12 year old boy would take that stance, but I did. The only baseball I even cared about for a while was...the Paw Sox. Sure, they were part of the bigger Red Sox team but their location and part in the community are part of what makes them so great. 

Now a new ownership wants to capitalize on an existing fanbase carefully built, cared for BASEBALL fans. The typical PawSox fan is a BASEBALL fan. Not an MLB fan, not a Boston Red Sox fan (obviously most WERE but the point is, any affiliate could be at McCoy and attendance would still be solid) but a fan of THE GAME. This is an important distinction to make because there are plenty of people in pink and green "B" hats who couldn't tell you how a score sheet even works. 

McCoy is an ESSENTIAL part of the lives of both Pawtucket and local baseball fans. Where else can you see a game, get a dog a beer and not go broke? Where else can you casually sit on a left field lawn or where are all the neighborhood families going to meet up on July 4th to watch the fireworks the stadium puts on? Where can a group of kids in Pawtucket with some spending money go watch a game on a summer day if not at McCoy? Taking the Sox out of Pawtucket is going to create a big hole in many hearts of people in the local area. Not to mention the economy of a city that's been on the brink for a while.

Now they are considering a move to Providence. In an area that isn't too residential at the advantage of it's owners. I'm not sure how the fans will benefit from paying for parking, paying more for a ticket, paying more for concessions....time will tell. For now though, it feels like another piece of baseball that has succumb to money.

Goodbye to bringing a family of 4 to a game for a 100 bucks. Goodbye getting the friends together last minute for cheap. Goodbye to neighborhood fireworks. Goodbye to something that made Pawtucket residents proud. Goodbye to McCoy. Goodbye to the PawSox.


Talkin' Baseball

Here's my first guest submission from local curmudgeon Tom Sealey!

"Hey, aren't you Wade Boggs?"
"Goddamn right I am.  Five-time batting champion."
"What are you doing here?"
"Clam cakes, son!  Clam cakes!"
"Oh...  So did you hear the Pawsox are moving to Providence?"
"Bout time.  Pawtucket is a pit.  Ugly as sin. Ugly houses, ugly streets.  Can't walk five feet without stepping on an empty Dunkin Donuts cup. Hell, if Joe Torre were a city, he'd be Pawtucket."
"You think Providence is a better choice?"
"Well, at least in Providence you have a chance of a view.  McCoy stadium, you hit a homerun you get to see sail into a street with triple decker shithouses and a tractor trailer parking lot.  Why do you think I never hit homeruns?  Fuckin' view is pitiful.  Fuck, in Providence, when they light the river on fire at least it's a choice, not like Pawtucket."
"The river in Pawtucket has never caught on fire.  Are sure your aren't thinking of Cleveland?"
"Cleveland, Pawtucket...they're both uglier than Joe Torre's mother's asshole."
"Umm, don't you have any attachment to McCoy Stadium?"
"Attachment?   Do I look like Ken Burns to you?  Nostalgia is for assholes.  McCoy was just a pitstop.  Like Joe Torre when he looks in the mirror.  Wants to get away from it as soon as possible."
"What do have against Joe Torre?  I mean, I might be wrong, but that horse over there looks suspiciously like the police horse you rode after you won the World Series with the Joe Torre coached Yankees."
"You mean Lulu?  Sure is the same horse.  I got nothin' against Torre.  He's just ugly.  Bit of a crybaby too.  Say, do you have any beer or fried chicken?"
"Sorry, no."
"Well, I'm outta here.  Me and Jim Rice are going to TP Buckner's house.  Come on Lulu, lets get a move on."


Noise Nation has strong opinions about team relocation.

My friends over at the award-winning  Noise Nation blog (Lehigh Valley IronPigs coverage, etc) were quick to offer their condolences about the PawSox being tossed in the mud and kicked in the head with an iron boot.

Here's a link to an unfiltered opinion or two. "The Paw Sox have called Pawtucket their home since 1970 and have a long standing and dedicated fan base. Why, why, why would they up and move?"

Thanks for having my back, everyone. Maybe I'll see you this summer.

Shout at the Devil

Remember the Sex Pistols? That was pretty funny.

Because I'm looking for submissions, I was going to tie in some of their lyrics. But they just didn't work, probably because Sex Pistols lyrics are mostly ridiculous.

If you're reading this and you have something to say about the PawSox/Providence ballpark thing, let me know. I'm not grubbing for content, I just want to hear from you and hear what you have to say.

Especially if you're pissed off.

Rational submissions will also be considered.

You can use a fake name if you want.

My email's in my profile. I also use Twitter.

I'm excited to publish my first guest submission tomorrow evening. Then I'll be doing a little fine dining in Woonsocket. I'm sure you'll be able to find me...

I love you. Let's listen to some angry music.


Who is longtime Providence attorney Jim Skeffington?

I mean, who is this guy?

He's 72 years old and lives in Barrington. Wow, he's going to be 80 in 8 years. By the time the ballpark is completed, he'll be like 75.

And Barrington? Small, wealthy town on the bay. I'll bet he's a Rumstick resident. I was once at a supermarket in Barrington and someone had a Rumstick vanity plate. I'll bet it was Skeffington!

From Ted Nesi's article on 2/24: "If the big money is moving, Jim Skeffington will be there,” Providence Journal columnist Peter Phipps remarked in 1995. “It’s his specialty.”

You should really read the entire article.

Also: "He is the godfather of moral obligation bonds."  So I'm now reading about moral obligation bonds, which is fascinating! (NOT.)

Skeffington's probably bros with Jerry Kapstein, right? He's a "special counsel" to the Boston Red Sox.

Okay, I'll be back.


I hate the ProvSox.

So this is enough to wake the dead, evidently. After so many years of rage and delight and boredom and irritation and elucidation IT HAS COME TO THIS.

Does anyone remember my dealbreaker? Lou Scwechheimer does because I told him personally.


Can I list the reasons why this is a terrible idea? You know how much I love to do this.


1. Everybody hates this plan. No one is behind it. Everyone is angry. This is a small state and people hold grudges.

2. NO ONE ASKED FOR A NEW BALLPARK. Everyone liked McCoy Stadium. It was perfectly functional and accessible. AFFORDABLE.


3. We will all end up paying for a stadium we don't really want. Fact.

4. If you park over by Corliss Point, the odds are good that your car will be broken into. I know people who this has happened to. One night I was walking over to the HC and I passed a string of cars with smashed in windows. It's a problem down there.

5. People who live in Massachusetts will not want to go to Providence. People in Massachusetts can't even be bothered to visit RI already. You know what they think of Providence? That's it a ghetto city with confusing roads and no place to park.

People from Woonsocket or Chepachet or East Providence or Johnston or Cumberland will go to Pawtucket. They will not go to Providence.

I'll be back Thursday. I need to do some research. I should start by looking at the Charlotte Knights' move from Fort Mill, SC, to Charlotte.

I hope Lucchino's prepared to deal with Rhode Island officials. This state is not known for its smooth approach to new business.


Jeff Levering's moving to Wisconsin.

I'll miss him in Pawtucket, but he'll still be in my imagination... MMMMM.


away from me and toward everyone else, which I hate

This is not good news. Or is it the best news?

I think Boston buying Pawtucket would kill me and maybe kill McCoy Stadium, which is part of me as much as concrete and steel can be part of blood, tissue, and hair. And cartilage. And stomach lining. And ear wax, whatever the hell that is.

And then what's going to happen to Tamburro and Schwechheimer?

I feel like step one of Corporate Takeover is EVERYTHING IS GOING TO COST MORE.

And... Hey, do you remember what my tipping point is? The one thing I said would make me turn my back on Pawtucket forever? DO YOU RECALL THAT SIMPLE SYMBOLIC THING?

The french fries. Change the french fries and I will burn it down to a cinder.

I'll be back later. I have a lot more to say but today I cannot.


je suis desolee

It's hard to find in a bleak, zig-zag city like Woonsocket, but there's a sand-colored church on a hill on a one-way street that has an unrealistic view of everything. You can see Providence and the bay and the slow, white sailboats like the ones on the quarter.

You have to be careful where you park because the priest keeps close watch. Next to the church is an old building with a bad steel bridge behind it. I would not recommend driving over it.

Nearby the mill houses are empty and blackened. The factory is no longer in use, but the bitter smell is still there. Like welded metal. It was a toxic avenue that they really would like everyone to stay away from. I did not think people died in those houses, but in the 60's there was some kind of chemical incident in the big brick factory, one of those old employers that kept families fed.

On sunny days on the weekend, families come over from Massachusetts (Blackstone, Millville, Uxbridge, Bellingham) to see the view, which dazzles, and the modern ruins. It hurts and it draws you in. You can't conceive of it. You can't even photograph the story. Well, I can't. Maybe you can.

In the days of ironworking and textile weaving and lunchpails and overalls, the men played 19th century baseball. Mill versus mill in Woonsocket, giving birth to people like Nap Lajoie. The Comets played at Island Park. It's the projects now, where telephone poles break and wires dangle by metal siding and the repairs are not a priority, because it's the projects.

Sleek, smart people don't like going to Woonsocket, a perfect example of entropy. I can see it fraying and fading and one day it will break apart from everyone, an ice floe, and drift north until it melts away entirely. Do you know who will be carried away?

No, you don't, because you've forgotten them already.


let's go

Today I'm going to CT, even though Connecticut is a terrible black hole.