The “B” Stands For Bandwagon

Or "Biotch."
Or "Biotch."

The Boston Red Sox are coming to Seattle later this week, and we’re here to prepare you for the bandwagon that may very well run you over on your way to the ballpark. Because we care about our fans.

The first thing you need to know about Red Sox bandwagoners is that most of them aren’t from Boston.

Many of them are actually from around here, in fact, but have been brought down by the Mariners’ losing ways over the years. They are misguided souls, often in the same mold as prostitutes or drug addicts, who are searching for something to cling to when all hope seems lost. They’re not bad people, just full of bad habits.

The second thing to note is that these individuals often feel empowered by the gang environment they’ve created around themselves.

That “strength in numbers” mentality (combined with a heavy dose of adult beverages, usually) gives many a Red Sox bandwagon member the testicular fortitude to shout bad things about your mother, or simply try and pick fights with any Mariner fan (or fan of any other team, for that matter) who dares make eye contact with their holiness. Consider the bandwagon a traveling throne of superiority.

Third, a large majority of passengers on the bandwagon are rather limited in their knowledge of both the Sox, and the game of baseball in general.

For instance, if you get the opportunity, ask them to name more than five players on the current Sox roster (they’ll know two for certain, Ortiz and Papelbon, but it will be a crapshoot after that).

Or, perhaps, see if they can recall former closer Bob Stanley, the man who essentially squandered the ’86 World Series on a wild pitch to Mets outfielder Mookie Wilson.

"We had Jeff Bagwell? Why did no one tell me this? Why?!"
"We had Jeff Bagwell? Why did no one tell me this? Why?!"

If you really want to sabotage their failing memories, ask them who the Sox obtained relief pitcher Larry Anderson for during the 1990 stretch run. If they don’t know the answer, they’ll be pissed. But if they actually do happen to know the answer, they’ll be even more pissed. (It was Jeff Bagwell, by the way.) Either way, it’s a win-win scenario.

Fourth, don’t hesitate to comment on the brand new Sox hat the casual bandwagoner just picked up from the Mariners team store. The one he scrambled to get at the very last minute, desperately trying to find any piece of apparel to don in support of the team he’s almost a fan of.

Fifth, if you get bored, start noticing little things about the wagon, such as how many “Garciaparra” jerseys you can count, or how many of the Nationers are dressed like “bros” (khaki cargo shorts, brown leather flip-flops, a too-tight tee-shirt, and the “vintage” looking faded denim blue/Kelly green Sox cap with the curved bill…how’s that for specific?).

Finally, if a bandwagoner gives you any trouble, kindly remind him that since Safeco Field opened, the Sox have a 21-28 mark in the not-so-friendly confines. Call it a small victory (or, more aptly, a series of small victories) for the hometown nine.

You see, the difference between us and them is quite simple. We live and die by our team, and we’ve been there since day one. We haven’t bought high or sold low; we’ve weathered the ups and downs like real fans do.

No, we Mariners fans may not have a championship to our credit, or even more than forty years of history just yet. But at least we can look ourselves in the mirror each morning and know, deep down in our heart of hearts, that we’re true, real-life, honest-to-goodness fanatics of our hometown ballclub. No faking, we’re for real.

4 thoughts on “The “B” Stands For Bandwagon”

  1. No offense to the true Red Sox fans out there. You endured a century of bad luck and I respect your sticktoitiveness through all that.

    This is strictly between me and the wagon.

  2. I bought that very Red Sox hat pictured in high school. At the time, the Red Sox were an acceptable second-team to the Mariners (the one you cheer for when the Mariners aren’t on, or when they go farther in the playoffs than you). There were a lot of reasons to like the Red Sox — a beautiful stadium where I saw A-Rod play his first MLB game, a loveable loser history, a cool city, and their status as the anti-Yankees (who I still hate). I rooted for them in their epic series against NY and was happy when they won the World Series for the first time. Then something changed. Everything mentioned above happened. Now I almost hate the Red Sox worse than the Yankees, and I certainly find their JohnnyDamon-come-lately attitude more obnoxious. At least most Yankees fans have a generations-old degenerative disease. Both teams are the same these days, operating in a wholly different universe and throwing money around like an AIG executive.

    You combine this phenomenon with typical Seattle passiveness and you have a problem whenever the Yankees, Red Sox, or even the Blue Jays (hordes of drunken Canucks!) descend en masse upon our stadiums. I don’t know of many other places where home teams take such crap from visiting/bandwagon fans. It’s time to stop being polite and turning the other cheek. It’s time to sport the blue and teal, or homemade versions of the cap above (repent, Red Sox sinners!), chug down some pregame liquid courage, and heckle opposing fans ruthlessly until they know that they’d better hide their colors the next time their stupid team comes to town. Go Mariners!

  3. Indeed I agree with this article. If you produced one of those hats I’d be first in line. Every year we play the Red Sox I sometimes have to think about whether or not the Mariners are playing at home. Fairweather Boston fans please go home…you have plenty over other winning sports teams to cheer for…

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