Some fun facts from the Fenway streak
April, 10, 2013
By Jeremy Lundblad, ESPN Stats & Information
David Butler II/USA TODAY SportsThe final Fenway sellout of the 794-game streak was Monday's home opener.The Boston Red Sox's 794-game Fenway Park sellout streak came to an end Wednesday night, putting a bow on the longest run of consecutive full houses in baseball history. Here are a few interesting nuggets from the streak:
• What happened in the first game of the streak? The Red Sox beat the Rangers 12-3 on May 15, 2003. Pedro Martinez pitched six scoreless innings for the Red Sox, with eight strikeouts and no walks, despite playing with a sore groin. David Ortiz played first base that game as part of a first base/designated hitter platoon that included Kevin Millar, Shea Hillenbrand and Jeremy Giambi. Former Sox outfielder Carl Everett homered around the Pesky pole for Texas. When he came back out to right field, fans threw two baseballs in his direction and the Rangers pulled him from the game.
Ironically, before the game that day, Red Sox president Larry Lucchino downplayed the team’s low attendance numbers in early April.
"I think that's attributable to several things," he told the Herald. "One, we haven't played the Yankees at home yet. We played them in April last year. Then you've got the economy, the elongated winter, and the distraction of the Iraq War. But I think we're in much better position than most of the other franchises in baseball."
Little did he know his team was about to embark on a record run.
May 15, 2003 was also Josh Beckett’s 23rd birthday, though he was still three years away from appearing with the Red Sox.
• Most wins at home since May 15, 2003: Since the streak began, the Red Sox -- 486-308 over those 794 games -- have the second-best winning percentage at home (.612). The Yankees are first at .643.
• Red Sox pitching leaders during the streak: Tim Wakefield has the most wins at Fenway during the streak with 53 (about 10 percent of the home wins over that span). Beckett is second with 41. Former Sox closer Jonathan Papelbon has the lowest ERA at Fenway (minimum 200 innings pitched) over that span at 2.52. Beckett has the most strikeouts with 551.
• Red Sox offensive leaders during the streak: Ortiz has the most hits (792), runs (490), homers (163) and RBIs (587) at Fenway since May 15, 2003.
• Red Sox vs. Yankees: The Sox were 45-47 against the Yankees at Fenway during the streak (46-49 in the Bronx).
• Number of walk-off Red Sox victories during the streak: 66
• Number of seats filled at Fenway during the streak: 29,067,339 (regular season only) -- which is more than twice the population of New England and pretty close to the current population of Venezuela.
• Number of no-hitters at Fenway during the streak: 2 (Jon Lester on May 19, 2008 and Clay Bucholz on Sept. 1, 2007)
• Price of beer and Fenway Franks in 2003 vs. now: In 2003, a 12-ounce beer was $5.25 and hot dogs were $3.50 apiece. In 2013 (at least in April, when reduced prices are in effect), a 12-ounce beer is $5 and Fenway Franks are two-for-$5.
• At the start of the streak in May 2003 : Grady Little was the Red Sox skipper. The Dropkick Murphys’ “Shipping Up To Boston” had not yet been released. Jackie Bradley Jr. (13) and Will Middlebrooks (14) weren’t even in high school yet. John Farrell was director of player development for the Indians. Aaron Boone still hadn’t been traded to the Yankees. Barack Obama was a state senator who had recently announced plans to run for U.S. Senate. Eight current MLB ballparks hadn’t opened yet.