SBD/April 19, 2013/Franchises

Red Sox Plan For Emotional Return To Fenway; Bruins, NASCAR Teams Also Plan Tributes

Fenway Park's left field wall now has the "B Strong" logo affixed to it
The Red Sox are scheduled to play the Royals Friday night in their first home game since the Boston Marathon bombings, and the game will "be about Boston," an opportunity to "bring a city and a fanbase together to mourn and pay tribute to the victims of the bombings, and the first responders," according to Nick Cafardo of the BOSTON GLOBE. Fans will "likely see a similar show at Fenway Friday night" to the Bruins' first home game on Wednesday. Red Sox Senior Advisor Dr. Charles Steinberg is "not looking for a major production." Instead, he is "looking to capture the moment in the most natural way possible." Cafardo notes a "good bet is that the crowd will join in on the national anthem, and a moment of silence will be observed." It also is a "good bet you’ll see some sort of player participation, though no formal show is planned." The Red Sox’ road jerseys include the word "BOSTON" on the front, while the home jerseys say "RED SOX." It would be a "good idea to have the Red Sox wear their road uniforms at Fenway for one night" (BOSTON GLOBE, 4/19). ESPN BOSTON's Gordon Edes wrote a reminder of the bombings "has already been affixed on the Green Monster in left: The team's 'B' logo, with the word 'strong' underneath, an avatar that has been adopted in countless places across cyberspace." The Red Sox will "follow the example of the Bruins on Wednesday night and cue organist Josh Kantor to provide accompaniment for a collective singing of the anthem before Friday's game" (ESPNBOSTON.com, 4/18). Royals P Bruce Chen said, "The game is something that gives them hope and is something that helps them to keep going. We’re all concerned about the security, but one of the things we’re doing is trying to help the city get back to a sense of normalcy" (K.C. STAR, 4/19).

LENDING A HAND: The Bruins and Penguins will auction off their game-worn jerseys from Friday night's game to support those affected by the bombings. The Bruins' jerseys will include a blue and yellow "Boston Strong" patch, while the Penguins will wear a "617" patch representing the Boston area code. The Bruins also announced official sweaters will be raffled off at the Panthers-Bruins game on Sunday and the Lightning-Bruins game on April 25 at the Bruins Foundation Table located at Level 4 Loge 4 to support The One Fund Boston (Bruins). Meanwhile, SPEEDTV.com's Mike Hembree notes some NASCAR teams are "stepping up to show support for Boston" in the wake of the bombings. The three Roush Fenway Ford Fusions will "carry 'B-Strong' decals during this weekend’s NASCAR event, and RFR co-owner Jack Roush has pledged to donate $100 for every lap the team leads" during Sunday’s Sprint Cup STP 400 at Kansas Speedway. Team Owner Michael Waltrip "plans to honor the victims ... by running special door numbers on his three Sprint Cup cars at Kansas." The door numbers on the No. 15, 55 and 56 Michael Waltrip Racing Toyotas "will replicate the 2013 Boston Marathon runner 'bib' numbers" (SPEEDTV.com, 4/18).
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