It is now December in the year of our Aceves 2019, which means that everyone who is anyone is doing some sort of content creation to mark the end of the decade. It is horribly unoriginal, which I do not say derisively because I’m doing it too! It’s practically legally obligated! Anyway, I’m going to be counting down the top moments of the decade for the duration of the month. We’ll start with our honorable mentions in which I’ll put down my numbers 11-20 moments of the decade and then after that each of the top ten moments will have their own standalone post. This is all totally subjective (obviously), and it’s also specifically not the best moments. In other words, i’s not all good, though most of it is. Okay, that’s enough, right? I don’t need to explain the concept of a top moments of the decade series, right? You get it.
All things considered — a phrase I hate because considering all things should be the default, no? But I’m using it anyway, and to open this post no less — the 2013 Red Sox team was the most memorable of the decade. They obviously weren’t the worst team of the decade, but they also weren’t the best. I think you can make the argument that, on paper, they were only third best, but I’m not going to waste my breath with that. All I’ll say is that talent is not all that matters, particularly in the matter of building a connection with a fan bas. It matters, but it’s not everything.
That 2013 season was, of course, marked by something that didn’t involve the baseball team at all. This was the year when the city was shaken by the Marathon bombing, a horrific time that also saw Boston come together in ways rarely seen by any city. After that day, we were looking for someone to come and pick us up. Not to save us — that kind of pressure can’t be put on one person or entity — but to help us move on. We didn’t know at the time that we were looking at the best team in baseball at a time we needed them most. We didn’t need that, not that we would have said no. We just needed a good, fun team to distract us for three hours a night every night. I think it’s fair to say this team was up to the task.
They were having a good April leading up to that game, but it was still far to early to really say anything about this team on the field coming into the first game back at Fenway since the Marathon. Remember, this was coming off the almost impressively disastrous Bobby V year. Even before they played that first game, though — the one that included Daniel Nava’s game-winner in the eighth that inspired Don Orsillo’s “Boston, this one’s for you!” call — we got the moment of all moments.
By this time, enough time had passed after the Marathon that we knew the Red Sox would have something planned for this. They, and really all of the Boston teams, have generally been good at handling big moments, though no one really had experience with something like this. It was a Saturday afternoon against the Royals, and for reasons I don’t remember I was on campus. I know that because I knew I wanted to watch but didn’t have a TV near me. So, I found a couch outside a dining area in the student center and watched a live stream on my phone. Had I known what was going to happen, I probably would have gone someplace where I wasn’t surrounded by people.
At the end of the ceremony, David Ortiz took the microphone for his most iconic moment in a Red Sox uniform, and it was one that didn’t even happen during a game. There are few people on this planet who could have inspired and calmed and rallied the Boston crowd in the way Ortiz did. I’m going to be honest with you here. I don’t have the capacity to do justice to his speech. I’m just going to drop the video here and let it speak for itself.