Wednesday, July 08, 2009

Welcome back to an old ballplayer.

This past Tuesday. I was lucky enough to get some phenomenal tickets to the second game of the Red Sox-A's series. I was upset to hear on the radio prior to the game the Nomar would not be in the line-up. He was in the line-up the previous night and he received a rousing reception from the Fenway faithful. Nomar played his last game in Boston 5 years ago. The picture on the front of the Globe sports section said it all.

I wrote an article back in 2005, after Nomar had fallen from grace. I remember my disappointment when he was dealt. As someone who was in middle school during his peak years, he was a player I loved. He was superb, he did it all. We all know that.

Last night I was sitting just behind the away team's on-deck circle. As John Papelbon motered through another ninth inning save my glance was taken from what was going on between Pap and Ryan Sweeney.

There were two outs and one man on base. If Sweeney managed to get on base a pinch-hitter was going to come to the plate as the tying run in a 5-2 game. That pinch-hitter was Nomar. He was standing right there, waiting for his moment. Waiting to dig in against the Sox, waiting to try to tie the game. People around us noticed him waiting. I got goosbumps. Sure it was cold and rainy, but they were not from that. They were from a moment, a moment that I really wanted to see happen. I wanted Nomar to have a chance. I wanted to hear the crowd cheer for him. That would have been awesome.

Unfortunately Pap struck out Ryan Sweeney, "Dirty Water" came on over the speakers and Nomar walked to the away team's dugout. I left disappointed.

The sensation of seeing a former local star, a local icon, in a different uniform was weird. It left me feeling a little bit sad. Part of me thinks Nomar feels he is missing out, missing out on the party. He is stuck in Oakland, playing on a crappy team in the twilight of his career. There is no chance of playing in October, there is no chance of a ring. Nomar will leave Fenway knowing he will miss it. Knowing what he is missing out on. Knowing that he sold his stock just a little bit too early.

An interesting view from Jason Whitlock on Steve McNair...

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