Today’s baseball question requires an in-person experience: what’s the coolest thing you have ever seen at a ballpark?
Most of us have seen historic moments or a thrilling deciding game of a playoff series on TV, but we’re all far more limited in the neat stuff we’ve seen first-hand.
Which means it might lead to weird answers. For example, I’ve never seen a no-hitter in person, but I have seen a drunk guy take his shirt off and start singing the National Anthem . . . in the fourth inning. Folks, Tiger Stadium was LIT in the 1980s.
But no, that’s not my answer. My answer is either that Greg Maddux game that helped me avoid a midlife crisis which I wrote about recently or, more traditionally, watching the Madison Bumgarner Game. Yeah, that Madison Bumgarner Game: Game 7 of the 2014 World Series in which he came back on two days rest following a complete game shutout and blanked the Royals for five more scoreless innings of relief, preserving a one-run lead and helping the Giants win the Series. It was some serious goosebumps stuff.
OK, maybe that was a cheat because I was only able to be there because I had a press pass. Maybe we don’t count it. You can argue about that but not until after you’ve told me the coolest thing you’ve ever seen at a ballpark.
Even Drellich of The Athletic reports that the Boston Red Sox are cutting the pay of team employees. Those cuts, which began to be communicated last night, apply to all employees making $50,000 or more. They are tiered cuts, with people making $50-99,000 seeing salary cut by 20%, those making $100k-$499,000 seeing $25% cuts and those making $500,000 or more getting 30% cuts.
Drellich reported that a Red Sox employee told him that “people are livid” over the fact that those making $100K are being treated the same way as those making $500K. And, yes, that does seem to be a pretty wide spread for similar pay cuts. One would think that a team with as many analytically-oriented people on staff could perhaps break things down a bit more granularly.
Notable in all of this that the same folks who own the Red Sox — Fenway Sports Group — own Liverpool FC of the English Premier League, and that just last month Liverpool’s pay cut/employee furlough policies proved so unpopular that they led to a backlash and a subsequent reversal by the club. That came after intense criticism from Liverpool fan groups and local politicians. Sox owner John Henry must be confident that no such backlash will happen in Boston.
As we noted yesterday, The Kansas City Royals, who are not as financially successful as the Boston Red Sox, have not furloughed employees or cut pay as a result of baseball’s shutdown in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. Perhaps someone in Boston could call the Royals and ask them how they managed that.