When Masataka Yoshida hit his first home run as a member of the Boston Red Sox (and as a Major League Baseball player) at approximately 7:30 pm Monday night, things were looking great. Yoshida’s home run came just minutes after Rafael Devers’ first home run of the year and just minutes before Triston Casas’. The Sox’ offense had scored 32 runs in just 22 innings. Things were rolling.
In the days since that home run, a harsh reality has set in. The Sox offense, since that Casas home run that came moments after Yoshida’s, has scored just 3 runs in 26 innings. They were swept by the Pittsburgh Pirates. The wheels have begun to come off after a promising-enough start, and I think I know why.
During Monday night’s game, reports began to circulate saying the family that
caught Yoshida’s home run ball [Ed. Note: They didn’t even catch it! Someone else did and give it to them!] on the green monster could not be persuaded to give it up. NESN showed Red Sox/Fenway employees and even Wally himself attempting to negotiate with the family. Post-game, Yoshida himself confirmed the ball did not return to him, saying “I hope that ball comes back one day” through his translator.
I’m not one to believe in curses or the supernatural, but it all makes too much sense. The bats, the pitching, the defense, the vibes. Everything has been a disaster since the moment Yoshida was denied ownership of his first home run ball. I hate to say this after the big one ended only 19 years ago... But the Red Sox just might be cursed again. We need to get that ball back.
Now listen, did this family technically do anything wrong here? No, they didn’t. They ended up with the ball, and they can choose to do whatever they want with it. That could be selling it tomorrow for some quick cash or perhaps the ball ends up becoming a family heirloom passed down for generations. Either way, you catch a home run ball at the ballpark, it’s yours. That’s how it’s worked for a hundred years.
So we’ve established that the family who caught Yoshida’s ball didn’t really do anything wrong. But in a much more real sense, they did. I mean come on now. This isn’t Bonds’ 756th or McGwire’s 62nd. This is the first career home run of a 29 year old rookie! Whatever monetary value this ball holds, I am literally certain the Red Sox could match it with a couple pieces of memorabilia. But maybe the family wasn’t interested in money. Maybe they just wanted to keep the ball for sentimental value. Okay. Sure. But I have to imagine the Red Sox offered some type of meet and greet with at least Yoshida and possibly even more of the team. None of this makes any damn sense! It compels me though.
What could this family want? I imagine the team negotiated with them for the full nine innings. The price probably got pretty high! What could pry this ball from their hands and bring balance to the Red Sox once more? This is America. And in America, everything has a price. The Boston Red Sox are worth an estimated 4.5 BILLION dollars. That is an unfathomable amount of money. Offer some to the family! Just straight cash homie. No signed jerseys or signed balls. No meet and greets. Just hand them a big fat check. How much you ask? I don’t know. A thousand dollars? Ten thousand dollars? Who cares! It’s not my money!
If the money still doesn’t work, then I’m afraid we may have to take more drastic measures to save our ball club. Perhaps a house is purchased for the family. Maybe a boat? A small plane? A rare exotic animal? I don’t care what it takes.
It is high time for this ownership group to put their money where their mouth is. They say the Red Sox are still a top priority. Prove it. Your wealth is nearly endless. Put it to good use! I don’t care about any charitable endeavors or donations! This is what’s important right here. This baseball.
John Henry, Tom Werner, LeBron James: I beg of you. Make this family an offer they cannot refuse. Bring that baseball home. End this curse. The fate of the franchise depends on it.