…I was on Lansdowne St., Boston with my future husband/then fiance David. We went in to Boston to enjoy the crowds that the All-Star game brought into Fenway, and even though we didn’t have tickets to the home run derby, we thought it’d be fun to try to catch a homer after it made its way over the Green Monster. We were a month off from our wedding, knee-deep in replies to the invitations, and over our heads trying to keep all parties happy. We welcomed an evening in our favorite city, hot and muggy though it was.
It was the summer of 1999, if you remember…the summer of the home run race between McGwire and Sosa was a year behind us. But there was still excitement in the air as it seemed that at any moment, a record could happen again. McGwire was knocking them from home plate over our heads and onto the Mass Pike behind us. So much of that period of baseball is now tainted with banned substances and lies to Congress, but then it was wild fun to see men outpacing their compatriots in the sport.
Yet it seems fitting that the man who won that night is one man who seems to be above the steroids suspicion: Ken Griffey, Jr. His numbers are consistent, without the spike in stats that most users had. His body didn’t change shape over the years. I hope we can have one name that remains clean when all the dust has settled, and his would be a nice one to remain.
Side note: also on that muggy street that night was our friend Tom, though we didn’t meet him until years later. Recently we discovered that we were in the same place at the same time. Good fun knowing that the Lord knew we’d be friends, though that night we were strangers, observing the scuffle over Sosa’s home run ball from different sides of the crowd.
Enjoy All-Star week!