Well before he joined the Boston Red Sox, Ted Williams was a baseball star when he played for Hoover High in San Diego. He was idolized by the younger boys in the neighborhood, including Ray Boone, six years his junior. Fast forward 11 years. Late in 1949, Boone was called up from the minors to play shortstop for the Cleveland Indians. When the Indians played the Red Sox, Ray would run out to his shortstop position as Ted ran in from left field. Ray always wondered if Ted would remember him. Each time, Ted would pass him without the slightest glimmer of recognition. During a home game against the Red Sox, Ray left eight men stranded to cost the Indians the game. But in his first game at Fenway Park, Ray hit a home run to tie the game. In the top of the ninth he hit a second home run, which won the game. When the Indians took the field in the bottom of the ninth, he ran out to shortstop as Ted ran in from left field. As Ted passed him he said, without lifting his head, “You can’t beat the boys from Hoover High.” Ray said he got as much of a thrill from that as he did from the two home runs. On this day in 1949, Ted Williams was named American League Most Valuable Player.
Great post! Appreciate such rich history… sharing it with someone who may find much joy in moments discussing this with his dad. Robert O’sullivan, enjoy!
[…] Williams got four hits in the first game. In the first inning of the second, he faced Fred Hutchinson and launched a ball into Section 42, Row 37, Seat 21 in the right-field bleachers. It was the longest home run ever hit in Fenway Park. […]
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