Watching the Red Sox in this years post seasons games has been quite interesting. I have never been a Boston Red Sox fan and living in the South Bronx under the shadows of Yankee stadium never gave me a reason to, I was not a masochist. I always remember them for being the last team to integrate and sign a black player and I never had a reason to visit Boston.
However, throughout the years two of my daughters had moved up to Massachusetts, one to the outskirts of Boston where she also set up a business, thus my relationship to the city has slowly changed. I also remember the annual MacWorld Apple computer conventions in Boston that I attended every year. Thus, my visits to Boston were becoming more frequent
Though I was becoming more open to the city of Boston our team loyalties remained intact. I remember family quarrels with buying my grandchildren Yankee outfits and my daughter telling me she was not going to let them wear it to school, only in the house.
I remember my son telling his sisters that he did not want to see his nephew and nieces wearing Boston Red Sox, or New England Patriots outfits, especially when they visited us in the Bronx.
There was always a discussion as we closely monitored our daughters to not turn on our family loyalty to New York teams especially against the Yankees and NY Giants football. However, times change and today we have a totally different view and more tolerant of non New York teams.
I have had some good experiences working with the Red Sox organization on several events for Latino Sports and for the Latino Sports Writers and Broadcasters Association.
Our relationship goes back to Pedro Martinez winning the LatinoMVP Award in 1997 and working with the team for the first time on trying to give a Boston Red Sox star player an award in the South Bronx just blocks from Yankee stadium.
It was not easy, but thanks to the Red Sox having an open mind it was done and Pedro Martinez, the new sensational pitcher for the Red Sox was honored in “enemy” territory. The success of the event demonstrated the beginning of a new relationship between Latino fans that admired the player no matter what team they played for.
Since then we have also organized events at Fenway Park where we have honored, David “Big” Papi Ortiz for his two LatinoMVP Award’s in 2006 and 2010. These events were quite successful and appreciated by the team, the players, the local Boston Latino community and the Red Sox organization.
As a result, my views and that of my family have changed. I still do not consider myself a Boston Red Sox fan, but I no longer have a distaste for the team where I accept my New England family transferring their loyalties to their local teams (I still can’t root for the Celtics over the Knicks, or now Brooklyn Nets) and have accepted my New York family rooting for the Red Sox over Detroit and now over St. Louis (but I want Carlos Beltran and Yadier Molina to do well, that’s my Boricua nationalism taking hold).
However, the biggest reason I am rooting for Boston is, David “Big Papi” Ortiz. I will explain that in more detail in my next article. For now I have joined many of my Dominican friends who are in the Bronx rooting for Boston. Besides, I’m a regionalist.