One can only imagine that if former Arizona Cardinals coach Dennis Green was running the Boston Red Sox, he would have said that Adrian Gonzalez, Josh Beckett, and Carl Crawford were not who we thought they were. On Saturday, the Red Sox finally let them off the hook, releasing them into the friendly confines of Chavez Ravine.
Like many MIT students, Wyatt L. Ubellacker ’13 is going to be around campus this summer, doing a UROP in Mechanical Engineering. When late June comes around, however, Ubellacker will venture out to an unlikely midsummer destination: Omaha, Nebraska, the site of the USA Swimming Olympic Trials. The Tech talked to Wyatt about his ongoing preparations for the trials and his experiences swimming at MIT.
After tossing a complete game shutout against Springfield College in his last outing, there was very little that Torre M. Swanson ’12 could have done against the Clark University Cougars on Saturday to improve upon his prior performance. Yet he did just that, allowing only a bunt single in seven innings to help the Engineers capture the first game of Saturday’s doubleheader en route to a sweep of the three-game weekend series.
Starter Torre M. Swanson ’12 pitched a masterful, complete-game shutout as the Engineers dispatched the Springfield College Pride, 10-0, in the first game of Saturday’s doubleheader at MIT. Given plenty of baserunners due to the erratic pitching of Springfield starter Greg Marakovits, the Engineers seized every opportunity in building an early lead for Swanson. Leading 2-0 headed into the bottom of the third inning, the Engineers combined two hits with three walks and a hit batsman to produce four runs, advancing runners on both wild pitches thrown during the inning. The six-run deficit put the game out of reach for Springfield as Swanson retired 14 straight batters to start the game. Swanson’s perfect effort was finally broken up when Pride catcher Matt Milano doubled in the bottom of the fifth. With two outs in the top of the seventh and a 10-0 lead, Swanson nearly lost the shut-out when Milano hit a hard shot down the right field line with designated hitter Karl Quist on first base. However, the ball was ruled out of play and Milano was held to a double. Swanson shut the door on Springfield and preserved the shut out with his third strikeout of the day.
A terrible sensation of helplessness gripped all of New England last Wednesday night. The Red Sox entered the final night of the season tied in the standings with the Tampa Bay Rays with the wild card playoff spot up for grabs. At the last possible moment, everything went awry.
Having suffered four straight losses heading into the weekend, MIT Men’s Soccer was hoping to regain momentum on Saturday at Steinbrenner Stadium. Unfortunately, with a 1-0 loss for MIT, the nationally-ranked Ephs of William College stood in their way.
Editor’s note: This is the second part of a series introducing Boston’s professional sports teams. With the NFL season just getting under way, here’s a look at the New England Patriots. This piece was originally published last fall, but has been updated for the 2011-2012 season.
Editor’s Note: Welcome to Boston! Since Beantown’s professional sports teams are such an integral part of its culture, we’re presenting an insider’s view — history, current state, and future expectations — of each of them. The first installment in the series, originally published last fall but updated for 2011, features … the Red Sox, of course.
Starting pitcher Aric J. Dama ’13’s emergence as an ace on the Engineers’ roster has been one of the dominant stories of the 2011 MIT baseball season.
When he stepped onto the mound to face the Engineers in the top of the ninth inning, freshman phenom Michael Bortolotti of Babson College had given up just one earned run in 39 innings. The Engineers’ offense, dormant for eight innings against Babson starter Andrew Aizenstadt, exploded against the best pitcher in Division III baseball at just the right moment.
MIT’s offense, rendered dormant by WPI pitching last week, erupted for 22 runs in two games as the Engineers took two of three games from the U.S. Coast Guard Academy this past weekend, improving their overall record to 14-6.
Holding onto a 1-0 lead in the top of the third, starter Chrisopher L. Vaughan ’12 found himself in a bases-loaded jam, pitching on a frigid Tuesday afternoon against Worcester Polytechnic Institute. This is the type of situation when dugout chatter tends to pick up. Dugout chatter is a rhythmic composition of the digits of the player’s numbers (2 and 8, in the case of Vaughan), a disyllabic nickname (Vaughanie), and exhortations like “here we go” or “battle.” The presence and intensity of the chatter matters far more than the content. As such, heads turn when someone from the dugout artfully weaves in the suggestion that Vaughan should actually “have fun” and that, in fact, “baseball is fun.”
At 1:55 p.m. on Friday, April 8, military jets will streak across the sky to kick-off a baseball season that, to a vast swath of New England, no superlative can adequately describe. If you tune into WEEI 850 AM, you will hear caller after caller proclaim that he or she has truly found the best baseball team in the world. Not only that, you can be part of the excitement on Opening Day at Fenway Park, for just $100 on the secondary ticket market (seat not included)!
Welcome back. For some of you, this has been a four-month hibernation from reading or thinking about professional baseball. I’ve kept tabs on all of you. In Dallas, you despaired for the plight of Tony Romo, agonized over Wade Phillips, and fell back in love with Jason Garrett. In Alabama, you invested your life savings in a Cam Newton legal defense fund and vowed to take those bureaucrats at the NCAA to the Supreme Court over Newton’s eligibility, if it came to that. In Green Bay, you went to your neighborhood Packer shrine and thanked the Cheesehead gods for giving you a general manager with the guts to say “no” to Brett Favre and “yes” to Aaron Rodgers when it came down to it in 2008. In New England, you thought that this year was going to be better than the 18-1 2007 season, until it wasn’t.
If sports can strike awe in the collective imagination of the spectator, the player, or the manager in moments of triumph, the day after can be pretty damn good, too. The Yankees lost 22-0 to the Cleveland Indians the night before my school year began in 2004. For the entirety of the next day, I had, and seized, the opportunity to warn the Yankees fans at my high school of their team’s impending doom. As we began our classes, each student had to sign up for a day to give a presentation on current events in social studies class. My chosen date was October 28. By sheer luck, this was to become the day after the Red Sox won their first World Series in 86 years. Never mind that the momentous 2004 election was only a week away, the title slide of my presentation featured a picture of the euphoric celebration inside Busch Stadium. Let’s take one last opportunity to savor the biggest and best sports moments of 2010:
Rare is the day when I see more students wearing hometown baseball merchandise than the ubiquitous “E/c^2sqrt(-1)PV/nR” shirts, “EngiNERD” sweatshirts, and “God said ...[Maxwell’s equations here]..., and there was light” apparel. Wednesday, the first day of the 2010 MLB playoffs, was one of those days. Picking up breakfast, I chatted with a Braves fan wearing a Brian McCann jersey and the guy behind the sandwich counter at LaVerde’s about the Phillies’ dominant rotation and just how well veteran ace Roy Halladay will adjust to the pressure of the postseason. (After my predictions were documented, this question was closed; Halladay no-hit the Reds on Wednesday night in his first postseason start.) Walking down the Infinite, I came across a Rays fan decked out in a navy blue jersey and a Giants fan with the classic, black-and-orange, interlocking “SF” logo. Even to a fan whose team missed out on the postseason, it was heartening to see signs of baseball passion at MIT. Let’s take a look at the prospects of each of the postseason contestants.
Egypt's Ramy Ashour, the world's top-ranked player, triumphed last Wednesday night as the global game of squash made a splash in Boston at Symphony Hall. Dubbed &quot;Showdown@Symphony,&quot; the exhibition tournament sought to promote squash in a country where it is but a niche sport. Four of the world's best competed in a single-elimination format on the stage of Symphony Hall for the Sharif Khan Trophy as diners on the orchestra floor and spectators from the balconies took in the action. While the organizers pulled out all the stops to keep the audience entertained with their choice of venue and assorted gimmicks, the game itself needs no embellishment.
When I moved from the homeland of future Washington Nationals’ star Chien-Ming Wang (that would be Taiwan) to New England ten years ago, I suppose the Patriots were my “new home team”. However, sports loyalties are complicated. My father converted (some people would say “matured”) from a Yankees fan to a Red Sox fan over the course of his life, and I’m still not sure how he did it. As the Red Sox falter this year, I make concerted efforts to attach myself to a playoff-bound National League team (the Phillies); I wear the hat, follow them in the standings, but still struggle to attach myself to this team.
All summer, I’ve read about the declining TV and radio audiences for the Red Sox, but in order to gain a full grasp on the changing market for Red Sox baseball, I needed to go down to Fenway and wait in line for seats. In years past, I’d arrive outside the ticket window at Gate E a full five hours in advance of the first pitch and find thirty to fifty people camped out in the shadow of the Green Monster, spread out on blankets, sipping coffee, and listening to radio hosts dissect the Red Sox. As I arrived on Saturday morning at the ballpark two and a half hours before game time, I found just eight people in line ahead of me. In the thirty minutes between my arrival and the time tickets went on sale, the line in front of me dwindled to a mere four people as scalpers offered face value for “box seats” (be wary of scalpers: aside from the fact that the seats are grouped in rectangular sections, there was nothing “box” about those seats). The first-row, infield grandstand seats that I purchased offered an excellent view of what promised to be an intriguing pitchers’ duel in the first game of Saturday’s double-header.
The Red Sox headed to Tampa Bay last weekend to take on the Rays in a pivotal three-game series. Five and a half games behind the Rays, the Red Sox needed to take at least two out of three in the series to position the team for the last month of the season. A promising start stoked playoff hopes, but the rest of the weekend left Red Sox nation in a somber state of mind. Here’s a recap of the weekend and a look ahead at what lies in store for the Sox.
<i>Editor’s Note: Welcome to Boston! Since Beantown’s professional sports teams are such an integral part of its culture, we’re presenting an insider’s view — history, current state, and future expectations — of each of them. The first installment in the series features... the Red Sox, of course.</i>