The Fenway Effect


The Fenway Effect

A Cultural History of the Boston Red Sox

David Krell

280 pages
18 photographs, index


April 2024


$34.95 Add to Cart

About the Book

To be a part of Red Sox Nation is to be a hopeful romantic who neither betrays loyalty nor surrenders hope in the direst of circumstances. From Bangor to Back Bay, New Englanders endure in baseball matters. And life. The team’s history has intersected with the history of Boston and well beyond it, through the Curse of the Bambino, the military service of Ted Williams during World War II, and the Boston Marathon bombing. The Fenway Effect chronicles these stories and others that have built the incredible saga of the Boston Red Sox.

How did Cheers depict the passion of Boston’s sports fans? Why is Narragansett beer so important to New England? What’s the architectural impact of The Teammates—the statue of Bobby Doerr, Johnny Pesky, Ted Williams, and Dom DiMaggio outside Fenway Park? What did the Boston press really think about Red Sox owner Harry Frazee selling Babe Ruth to the Yankees? What was the origin of Fenway Park’s predecessor—Huntington Avenue Grounds?

Even Yankees fans will tip their caps to the rich impact of the Red Sox on music, movies, branding, broadcasting, and more. Plus, there’s a chapter focusing on the oral history of Red Sox fans, some of whom share here anecdotes that are funny, insightful, and heartwarming. 

Author Bio

David Krell is an author, speaker, and former producer at MSNBC. He is the author of 1962: Baseball and America in the Time of JFK (Nebraska, 2021) and “Our Bums”: The Brooklyn Dodgers in History, Memory, and Popular Culture.


“I couldn’t possibly love this book more. David Krell has written the definitive tome on Red Sox pop culture and reminds us how the team has been an integral part of Americana for generations. From the Babe to Sam Malone, and that tragic day in 2013 that brought Boston together as never before, this book drips with nostalgia and defines what it means to be a Red Sox fan. This treasure is a gift to Red Sox Nation and is required reading for followers of the Olde Towne Team!”—Erik Sherman, author of Two Sides of Glory: The 1986 Boston Red Sox in Their Own Words

“‘The Sox can steal your soul.’ That line, quoting a Boston fan, sums up the essence of David Krell’s thoroughly researched and engaging analysis of the bonds established between the Red Sox and their devoted fans, a tradition that has been handed down from generation to generation. Krell goes beyond the history of the Sox on the field to demonstrate the many ways in which, from its very beginning, the team has had a significant cultural impact, not only in Boston but throughout New England.”—Larry Baldassaro, author of Tony Lazzeri: Yankees Legend and Baseball Pioneer

“David Krell’s cultural history gives Red Sox fans (and foes) a joyous exploration of the franchise’s hold on American life. From the very real (Williams, Yastrzemski, Gowdy, Narragansett beer, the Citgo sign) to the unreal (Cheers’s Sam ‘Mayday’ Malone, Jimmy Fallon in Fever Pitch, Bill Buckner’s redemption in Curb Your Enthusiasm) to the surreal (Jimmy Piersall’s incredible life, the unbelievable 1975 Game Six, and the unbearable 1986 Game Six), the reader will relish this imaginative history of the former Boston Americans from the Huntington Avenue Grounds.”—Judith R. Hiltner and James R. Walker, authors of Red Barber: The Life and Legacy of a Broadcasting Legend

Table of Contents

Part 1. Boston Strong
1. April 15, 2013
2. Never Give Up! The Incredible Story of the Jimmy Fund
3. A Chance to Excel: Josh Gibson, Satchel Paige, and Ted Williams’s Hall of Fame Speech
Part 2. History and Tradition
4. Songs of the Sox
5. Hi Neighbor! Curt Gowdy, Narragansett Beer, and the Red Sox
6. Where Red Sox History Began: The First Game at Huntington Avenue Grounds
Part 3. Hollywood and the Red Sox
7. Reel Red Sox
8. The Ballad of Sam “Mayday” Malone
9. A Little Roller up along First: Game Six, Curb Your Enthusiasm, and the Dignity of Bill Buckner
Part 4. Heartbreaks and Happiness
10. Hope for Tomorrow: American Optimism, Cultural Revolutions, and Game Six of the 1975 World Series
11. Out of Sight, Baby: The Sixties and the Sox
12. Worthy Rivals: The Red Sox and the Yankees
Part 5. Icons
13. A Man Called Yastrzemski
14. Tom Seaver’s Last Hurrah
15. Location, Location, Location: The Tales and Travails of the Citgo Sign
16. Of Sluggers and Statues
Part 6. Voices of the Fans
17. Go Sox! The Fans Speak Out
Selected Bibliography

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