11/25/2013 11:50 P.M. ET
Red-carpet treatment: Sox screen WS movie
Players, front office enjoy another championship celebration at premier
By Ian Browne / MLB.com
BOSTON -- Less than a month after winning the World Series, the Red Sox got the red-carpet treatment on Monday night at the Wang Theater.
The occasion was the premiere of the 2013 World Series film, which brings Boston's latest baseball championship to life with thrilling images and poignant sound that captured the drama of a special season.
"I think this is the cherry on top," said Red Sox third baseman Will Middlebrooks. "This is kind of finishing everything off, and then we can kind of turn the page and get ready for next year. It's been fun, especially being in Boston, going to the events and seeing the fans and just hearing guys say thank you for doing this for our city, and it's not congratulations. It's 'thank you.' That just shows how much it means to them."
With the frigid temperatures outside, it was a night the Red Sox and some of their fans could gather in front of the big screen and re-live the storied action.
"We haven't had a lot of time to reflect on it because you've got to start right up given how long the season went for us -- fortunately," said president/CEO Larry Lucchino. "But this night is a good night to reflect back on it."
And MLB Productions does a masterful job telling the story, which is narrated by actor and Red Sox fan Ben Affleck.
Some of the best stuff is the interaction between players. Early in the film during Spring Training, Dustin Pedroia says to Mike Napoli, "Do you think I'm mentally there after just knowing me for a few days?".
A prevalent theme in the early stage of the film is the tragedy that happened at the Boston Marathon, and how it helped to galvanize the Red Sox.
There are plenty of walk-off highlights throughout the regular season, and an in-depth look at all three rounds in the postseason.
Prior to Game 2 of the American League Championship Series, a batting practice conversation is captured in which David Ortiz tells a teammate that he swung at pitches in the previous game that he never swings at. And he added that everything would be different in the next game.
Then, Ortiz is shown swatting the game-tying grand slam with two outs in the eighth, which had the fans gathered at the Wang Theater cheering as if they had just seen it for the first time.
Wherever a player was having a conversation in Boston's 2013 postseason run, MLB Productions seemed to have a microphone close by. In Game 6 of the ALCS, there is Napoli telling David Ross that he'll kiss him if the slumping Shane Victorino hits a grand slam. And right after that, Victorino skied one over the Monster to end his slump and vault the Red Sox into the World Series.
And once the Fall Classic starts, the film leaves no stone unturned. From the initial missed call at second base in Game 1 to the obstruction controversy in Game 3 to Ortiz's memorable in-game pep talk to his teammates in Game 4 to the clinch party in Game 6, it is all captured in vivid detail.
There is a scene of Ross collecting his equipment bag by the dugout after Game 4 while saying to no one in particular, "I love these guys -- brothers for life."
And in Game 6, Victorino is telling first-base coach Arnie Beyeler how thrilled he is that his whole family could make it to Boston for the game. "Living the dream," howled Victorino.
Ross is one of the players who made it to Monday's premiere.
"I don't know if that ever sinks in -- everyone asks that question," Ross said. "I don't know. We've got a group-text going [with teammates]. In the middle of the night, everyone is texting and talking about everything. I don't know that it's settled in for anybody. We'll text once in awhile, 'can you believe what we did?' I don't have any words for it."