Growing Up a Boston Sports Fan

What It's Like To Be A Boston Sports Fan In 2019

Winning twelve championships between four sports since the year 2000, it's truly hard not to respect greatness. It's not only the talent that attracts the attention. Boston sports fans are known for being well... intense would be an understatement. He's why Boston sports fans are the way they are, and why they expect nothing less than winning from their teams.

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Anyone who's grown up in a New England diehard family has heard all the stories. Our parents and grandparents experience championship droughts as long as sixteen years and even eighty-six between World Series Championships. And yet, they still put on their jerseys, bought their tickets and showed up to root their teams on and pray for a miracle. The miracle came in 2004 when the Red Sox finally "reversed the curse" and defeated the St.Louis Cardinals to bring a title back to the city that had longed for one, for so long.

The Patriots had won two years prior and were on route to take another Super Bowl victory that following spring, and Boston fans couldn't have been capable of predicting what was to come.

Fast forward fourteen years and the Red Sox have won another three times, the Patriots another four times and the Celtics and Bruins each adding another victory to the ever-growing total. Kids are growing up in a time where all they know is the greatness that Boston sports teams have to offer. Our parents and their parents who waited years to see championship teams at times are now watching a generation who has the luxury of a Duck Boat Parade almost annually. So why the change in the performance of teams?

Boston sports have always attracted hall of fame talented athletes. Larry Bird, Carl Yastrzemsky, Teddy Bruschi and Bobby Orr, all legends in the sports world, yet teams today are outperforming and soaring past fans expectations. The difference? Boston still is attracting legends...I mean hello can you say, David Ortiz? Zdano Chara? TOM BRADY!? But these athletes aren't only bringing talent, they're bringing camaraderie, inspiration and a new attitude to a once hopeless city.

Even when the teams seemed hopeless, Boston fans still showed their pride and spirit for their city. Even when the Red Sox were still "cursed" Fenway Park managed to sell out seven hundred and ninety-four consecutive games. At the time, the Red Sox were arguably the worst sports team in MLB history, fans still stayed cheerful and hopeful that they would pull out another world series victory.

Overall, there's nothing like growing up a sports fan in New England, and it's really no surprise that so many other teams and people despise us.

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Professional Athletes Are Paid Too Much

Are pro-athletes really deserving of the monetary commission they receive?
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For generations, children have aspired to become professional athletes. In the 1920's children wanted to be Babe Ruth; in 2012 children wanted to be Derek Jeter. The list of pro-athletes that influence the younger generation can go on and on. Looking back on elementary school yearbooks, the most common profession for youths has (and will continue to be) a professional athlete. Whether it involves the MLB, the NFL, the NHL, or any other professional league, children tend to pick this profession out of love for the specific sport. Yet, these innocent and uninformed children seem to strike gold by choosing one of the most economically successful jobs in the world.

While professional athletes dedicate most of their life to their respected sport, the amount they are paid to simply play games is absurd. For example, the average salary for a professional football player in the NFL is $1.9 million per year. Keep in mind that that is average, without external endorsements. Therefore, some athletes make much more than that. The crowd favorite Peyton Manning averages $19 million a year. Sports other than football also have averages that are incredibly generous. In the world of golf, the popular Tiger Woods makes more than $45 million a year. These pro-athletes make millions of dollars, most of whom have not received an outstanding education. In fact, some have not even received a college diploma.

Zooming out from the glamorous and indulgent world of professional athletics, taking a look at other professions seems to be much less appealing. How is it that jobs that are vital to the success of the public receive much less commission than jobs that revolve around running to catch a ball? The average pediatrician makes $173,000 a year. The average teacher salary is $50,000 a year. This does not mean that a professional athlete is any less of a hard-working, devoted, deserving professional. This also does not mean that the athletes have not pushed themselves and worked incredibly hard throughout the years to get where they are, but it does mean that there is a line where inequity takes over. Fame and fortune are showered upon athletes. Is it truly necessary to average out millions of dollars per year when people spend massive amounts of time researching and developing new policies, cures, or other ways to improve the condition of the world? The salary and status of professional athletes seems to be a major power imbalance in the world of careers.

Cover Image Credit: i.ytimg.com

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​A Division By Division Review Of April In The MLB

The 2019 MLB season is well underway, so it may be safer to make some predictions.

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(All statistics referenced are from https://www.mlb.com/.)

Now that most teams have played at least 30 games, we are about 1/5 of the way through the 162 games for each team, which still leaves a huge amount of baseball to be played. However, a lot of predictions and inferences can be made with this large sample size of April, and while they may not hold up, they do have solid evidence behind them. So with that, let's review the pennant races after April.

NL East

The NL East is shaping out to be a competitive division this year, not because all the teams are exceptionally good, but because the teams are well-matched (excluding the MLB-worst Marlins). The Phillies got off to a hot start but cooled off for a bit and picked up steam again, winning seven of their last 10 to lead the division by 1.5 games over the Braves, who are also heating up. The Mets and Nationals are under .500 and slowing down.

NL Central

This division has been wildly competitive as of late, and going to be in my opinion the most fun to watch over the next few weeks. The red-hot Cubs have won their last 7 games, taking the top spot from the Cardinals, who have lost their last four. The Brewers and Pirates are also very close, 1.5 and 3 games back respectively, and on 3 and 2-game win streaks respectively.

NL West

The Dodgers and Diamondbacks have revived a strong rivalry and have kindled a strong battle already, playing good baseball, with both teams winning 7 out of their last 10. Both clubs already have 20 wins and are only aiming for more. The Padres are also starting to show signs of improvement, but it is likely that the Dodgers and Diamondbacks will be the ones battling for their division.

AL East

Surprisingly, Tampa Bay continues their new success atop the AL East, two games over the Yankees. No one expected the Rays to jump out and lead the division, but they have started to maintain their success and seem to be here for real. Both the Yankees and the Red Sox are finally recovering after shockingly slow starts, 19-14 and 17-18 on the year respectively, good enough for 2nd and 3rd place in the division. If Tampa Bay can play well against the Red Sox and Yanks in their matchups, the Rays can distance themselves in the race.

AL Central

Another surprise, the Twins lead the AL Central by two games, over the Cleveland Indians, who many expected to lead the division this year. While the Indians are 18-14, their expected average factoring in Runs Scored and Runs Allowed should be 15-17, and every club in the AL Central has a negative run differential except the Indians, so it may be safe to say the Twins might be leading for a while.

AL West

In the AL West, the Astros have reclaimed the top spot and look to defend their title. The Mariners, whom no one expected to get to get off to the hot start that they enjoyed, have really fallen off and gotten themselves into a slump, dropping seven of their last 10 games to fall to a 19-17 record. The Astros will likely continue their success and stay atop the AL West

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