Patriots' Day takes on new meaning at Fenway
Fans, players unite to celebrate first Marathon Monday game since attacks
BOSTON -- Richard Deuso sat along the third-base line at Fenway Park on Monday with his wife and two friends, happy to have the sun beaming down on his face.
Not only was it a welcome feeling with snow still on the ground at his home in Stowe, Vt., it was giving him a much-needed boost after a 3 a.m. ET wakeup call.
"I wouldn't get up at that time for anything else," Deuso said. "With the significance of this year, it gave us the extra push to want to come."
Deuso was just one of 37,513 fans who came to cheer on the Red Sox in their 11:05 a.m. sellout tilt with the Orioles on Patriots' Day.
Fans made their way through the Fenway Park gates early with "We Run as One" signs and "Believe in Boston" flags, before exiting the park after a 7-6 loss to cheer on runners taking part in the 118th Boston Marathon.
It's a routine that plenty of fans take part in after every Patriots' Day game, including Michael Cambra and his wife Rosanna, who have been season-ticket holders since 1987.
However, last year was different. They had to get back to their home in Providence, R.I., and catch their son's volleyball game.
"Usually, every year we walk down to Boylston [Street] after the game, but because of our son, we went home," Michael said. "We usually stand right by the finish line. If we had gone down, it's likely we would have been right where the second bomb went off."
"I still get chills thinking about it," Rosanna said. "But we're taking that walk down to the Prudential [Center] this year -- even with the loss -- to feel that electricity in the city. It is an amazing feeling."
With a quick turnaround after a Sunday night game against the Orioles, the Red Sox knew Monday's affair would be a bit of a struggle.
"The schedule is what it is, and we have to react accordingly. It has thrown some body clocks off-kilter," Red Sox manager John Farrell said. "In this sport more than any, the routine is critical. This is a rarity today."
The Red Sox did come out of the gate a little flat. However, the energetic crowd gave the team the jolt it needed to make a charge in the middle and late innings.
"Everyone enjoys playing here. This is the best place to play baseball in the world," second baseman Dustin Pedroia said. "It doesn't matter what time the game is, the guys are going to be excited to go out there and play for the best fans."
Down, 6-0, going into the bottom of the fifth, the Red Sox fought back to get within a run, even putting the winning run in scoring position in the ninth.
"We had a lot of fans here today that were looking for a good outing from the Red Sox," catcher David Ross said. "We didn't give them that early on, but we made a game of it and it came right down to the last pitch.
"I'm proud of the way the guys battled and the character we have. That is Red Sox baseball."