From The 15 Vault – An Excerpt: ‘406 Little-Known Beantown (& Foxborough) Sports Facts!’
(Originally published July 24, 2019 )
Note: Patrick Scartelli and The Sports Junk Drawer will appear Thursday, owing to the Labor Day holiday. In his place is an excerpt from good friend of The15net dot com, sportswriter Mr. Stanislas Tecumseh Darden, Jr., with an excerpt from his forthcoming book, ‘406 Little-Known Beantown (& Foxborough) Sports Facts!’
At one time, Yawkey Way was known as Jersey Street!
First baseman Bill Buckner’s costly error was in Game 6, not Game 7 of the 1986 World Series!
Celtics Hall-of-Famer Bill Russell was, in effect, traded for the Ice Capades!
And speaking of ice, the Bruins for many years played their home games at the Boston Garden, which has a smaller ice surface than the now standard 200′ x 85′!
Red Sox pitcher Bill “Spaceman” Lee was never an astronaut. The nickname derived from his ‘spacey’ personality!
The New England Patriots actually held a 3-0 in Super Bowl XX!
‘The Splendid Splinter” Ted Williams hit a home run in his final at-bat at Fenway Park!
Despite public perception to the contrary, Atlanta Hawks center Tree Rollins bit Celtics guard Danny Ainge, not the other way around!
The Boston Bruins won a deciding Game 7 versus the Vancouver Canucks in the 2011 Stanley Cup Championship!
Tom Brady was drafted by the Expos in 1995 as a catcher!
The initial of Tom & Jean Yawkey are written in Morse code on the Fenway Park manual scoreboard!
Mr. Robert ‘Bob’ Kraft owned Foxboro Stadium before he bought the New England Patriots!
NBA great Shaquille O’Neal played his final season with the Celtics!
Prior to the 1994 MLB realignment and addition of a so-called ‘wild card’ team, the Yankees and Red Sox were unable to face one another in the playoffs!
Patriots star Troy Brown has received a TD pass and recorded an interception from Drew Bledsoe!
A ‘Bruin’ is an archaic term for a brown bear!
At one time, Jersey Street was known as Yawkey Way!
Celtics GM Arnold ‘Red’ Auerbach drafted Indiana State player Larry Bird an year early!
The Boston Braves baseball team, not the Red Sox, originally helped launch the Jimmy Fund charity!
Gillette Stadium was originally going to be named CMGi Field!
The Boston Garden had no air conditioning!
The left field wall at Fenway Park is know colloquially as “The Green Monster!” It is 37.2 feet high!
The ‘Spoked B’ Boston Bruins logo contains eight spokes!
Boston was the home for one season to a USFL team, called the Boston Breakers!
Former Patriots linebacker Mike Vrabel scored 8 touchdowns with New England, on 8 receptions!
Red Sox great Dennis Eckersley has won a Word Series, a Cy Young Award, and been named the AL Most Valuable Player; as a member of the Oakland Athletics!
In the 1980 NBA Draft, the Celtics traded their #1 overall pick in a swap that netted them center Robert Parrish, and a pick used to select forward Kevin McHale!
Hockey great Robert Gordon ‘Bobby’ Orr signed his first contract with a Bruins farm squad at the age of fourteen!
The now-New England Patriots actually debuted as an American Football League team in 1960, called the Boston Patriots!
Danny Ainge is a Mormon!
Red Sox great Ted Williams was the last major leaguer to hit over .400 for the season, when he hit at a .406 average back in 1941!
College and NFL footballs, or ‘pigskins’, are actually made from cowhide!
Drew Bledsoe, the Patriots #1 overall pick in the 1993 Draft, was replaced as starting quarterback due to suffering an injury on September 23, 2001 by Tom Brady!
Baseball great George Herman ‘Babe’ Ruth played for both Boston baseball teams, the Red Sox at the start of his career, and the Braves at the end of it!
Follow Mr. Darden at @StdSportswriter on Twitter.