It’s safe to say most Red Sox fans watched the final game of the American League Championship Series on Saturday at home, or maybe at a friend’s house.
I watched it pressed against a window that rattled from the noise of Fenway Park.
In hindsight, it was the best night of my life as a life-long Red Sox fan. Next to maybe getting married last year (of course! I can’t forget that).
Rewind back to 2006, when I served as editor of Northern Essex Community College’s student paper, the NECC Observer. Traveling with a staff of around six or seven journalism students, I had just landed in St. Louis for an American Collegiate Press journalism conference. We arrived to learn that our hotel — a few blocks from the newly built Busch Stadium — was effectively taken over by the American League champion Detroit Tigers.
As it turned out, the World Series had the Cards with a 2-to-1 series lead over the Tigers, and games four and five of the Fall Classic lined up with the first two days of our conference.
As we got to our hotel that night, a couple of us decided to swing by Busch Stadium to see the crowd. We got there sometime around the fifth inning of game four — much to the behest of our faculty adviser, who wanted us to stay in.
From the top of a parking garage across from Busch Stadium, we watched the Cardinals win 5-4 to take a 3-to-1 lead in the series. We could see much of the field perfectly, and sweetening the deal was the fact that our seats were free, not like the $1,000 seats in the park.
The next day, we had the entire staff on top of that parking garage. Since it was the possible clinching game of the series, there were 200 others up there at that point, and by the fifth inning, as the Cardinals had just taken a 3-2 lead, the streets around the stadium started filling up with a sea of red. By the eighth, car traffic had been completely cut off due to bystanders.