Monday, June 6

6/6/05 – Sox look for 5 Straight over St. Louis

It’s time for Jose Melendez’s KEYS TO THE GAME.
1. With yesterday’s Red Sox win, Jose’s 2005 record climbed to an impressive 3-0 prompting whispers about whether he might be a dark horse candidate for the All-Star team and questions as to whether his diminished innings in the early part of the season will prevent the woes that led him to pick up losses in his final five appearances of 2004.
While Jose’s record as a patron has been terrific, his record at the Fenway attendance quiz has been the mirror image, as Jose fell to 0-3 yesterday. Jose used to get attendance quizzes right most of the time, not as often as his friend Joel, who claims to have gotten every quiz he has seen right for 15 years, but still often. Also unlike Joel, Jose is not making things up. But lately, Jose just can’t get the job done. Thankfully, Jose has a simple and logical explanation for his futility – the new Red Sox ownership.
Yes, yes, Henry, Werner and Lucchino have won a World Series, expanded Fenway and improve concessions, but what they have done to the attendance quiz is just unconscionable. Yesterday, the official attendance was 35,008. The other final choice in the attendance quiz was 35,067. That’s a difference of 59. Fifty-Nine!!! That’s less than two-tenths of one percent. Tenths of a percent may mean something for interest rates, or stock prices or whatever the heck John Henry deals in, but they mean nothing in attendance quizzes. Nothing!!! Jose believes in high standards, he opposes the soft bigotry of low expectations, but expecting fans to make a distinction that fine in the attendance quiz is setting them up for failure. It is like asking Sox manager Terry Eurona to pick a utility man from a field consisting entirely of Ramon Vasquez and Cesar Crespo. Yes, there is some infinitesimal difference, and one must be better than the other, but the differences are indistinguishable to the naked eye. Whether one is right or wrong is strictly luck.
So here is what Jose proposes, for the next attendance quiz, the Red Sox should offer the following choices:

A. The actual attendance
B. The number of chicken wings Kevin Millar has eaten in the past year
C. Alan Embree’s ERA
D. Johnny Damon’s batting average out to five decimal places.

All of those should be somewhere between 30,000 and 37,000.

For the complete KEYS visit

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