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When the circus comes to town

Posted by Eric Wilbur, Boston.com Staff  April 5, 2010 08:56 AM

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A few random observations on a fun Opening Night...

- David Ortiz's director chair falling out from under him at the end of a pre-game interview on CSN: Hilarious.

- David Ortiz's failure to connect with a fastball directly in his wheelhouse: Not so much.

- Loved the Josh Sacco appearance. Loved it. In fact, I'm going to get cracking on having my two-year-old son recite the entire speech Bill Pullman gives in "Independence Day" and post it on YouTube so we can get him some parade time come July. Maybe Disney will come calling. Ka-ching.

- Can we pretend Neil Diamond didn't happen?

In reality though, this was less embarrassing than that recorded tripe we were subjected to during the 2008 opener, when Tom Werner and Wally danced along with the crooner to "Sweet Caroline," before announcing his summer tour.

- My wife and I had a bit of a tiff last night over the decision to have Pedro Martinez throw out the ceremonial first pitch. Her stance was that he shouldn't have that honor until he's officially retired, which I guess means she wouldn't want Clemens to do it either. Well, really, who would?

My stance was, "Hun, you're wrong."

Let's remind everyone that this was Pedro's first appearance at Fenway in his old 45 since Game 2 of the 2004 World Series. He wasn't able to attend the '05 ring ceremony, and his only other appearance at the yard came with the Mets in 2006 (when he was unceremoniously hammered by the Sox bats). Not only did I not have a problem with it, I reveled in it.

Nice of A-Rod to break up the rousing ovation the Fenway crowd was giving Pedro by running across the field and embracing him, only to hear the cheers turn to a cacophony of jeers.

- Dustin Pedroia's jack aside, my favorite swing of the night came on Adrian Beltre's deep sac fly to score Boston's first run of the night. Here's hoping we see a lot of it.

- On that same note, nice pre-game ovation for the man Beltre is replacing, Mike Lowell, of course, but the lack of loud one for John Lackey was somewhat surprising. Again, we're just going to pretend that the ovation for Neil Diamond didn't happen.

- I understand there was some aggravation over the blatant advertising time Dr. Dre managed to get for his headphones during last night's pre-game show on NESN. Like this was the first time something like this had happened on the network? Please.

No, the problem I had with Heidi Watney's five-minute infomercial was the failure to ask the rap artist the most relevant question available: When's the album coming out?

Maybe that could have even been a follow-up question when Dre and Interscope head Jimmy Iovine both basically confirmed a recent rumor that a single from Dre's (very) long-awaited next album "Detox" would feature a duet with Jay-Z.

After Watney asked them which song they would play for their at-bat music, Iovine said, "The new song Dre has in his pocket called 'Under Pressure', it's a brand new single by Dr. Dre and Jay-Z. That's the song I would use."

Big music news there. But instead of learning more, we got a few more flashes of the Sox logo on a pair of headphones. Neat.

- Chan Ho Park is going to provide months of entertainment for Red Sox fans.

- Great analysis via Jerry Remy's Twitter feed last night: "Everyone is asking where Wally was at end of #redsox game - he took off for Jerry Remy's Sports Bar & Grill to celebrate! John"

- Twenty-seven outs down, 4,347 and then some to go.

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About the Author

Eric Wilbur is a Boston.com sports columnist who is still in awe of what Dana Kiecker pulled off that one time in Toronto. He lives in the Boston area with his wife and three children. Comments and suggestions for the best Buffalo wing spots are encouraged.

Contact Eric Wilbur by e-mail or follow him on Twitter.

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