Tuesday Turnip

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It's time for another whimsical Tuesday Turnip search wherein I type a random phrase and we see what kind of interesting factoids "turn-up."

In honor of one of my favorite baseball teams, today I typed in "Fenway Park facts" unearthing the following factoids from a couple different sites:

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  • Opening Day for Fenway Park was April 20, 1912. The Red Sox defeated the New York Highlanders (later named the Yankees) 7-6 in 11 innings before 27,000 fans.
  • Opening Day for Fenway Park was April 20, 1912. The Red Sox defeated the New York Highlanders (later named the Yankees) 7-6 in 11 innings before 27,000 fans.
  • Fenway Park was actually due to open two days earlier, on April 18; however, there were two postponements due to rain.
  • Of course, the opening of Fenway Park was pushed off the front pages of Boston newspapers by news of the Titanic sinking.
  • In 1945, a throw by Athletics outfielder Hal Peck hit a pigeon flying over Fenway Park. The ball then deflected to the A's second baseman, who tagged out Boston's Skeeter Newsome trying to stretch his hit into a double. The pigeon flew away, minus a few feathers but otherwise unharmed. Another pigeon was not so lucky in 1974. Willie Horton hit a foul ball into the air at Fenway Park, hitting a low-flying pigeon. The pigeon fell from the sky — dead — and landed in front of home plate.
  • Prior to 1912, the Red Sox played their home games at the Huntington Avenue Grounds, now part of Northeastern University.
  • Besides the Red Sox, several other teams have played in Fenway Park. In 1914, while Braves Field was under construction, the "Miracle Boston Braves" played their World Series games in Fenway.
  • The Boston Patriots — now the New England Patriots — were fall occupants from 1963-68 before eventually ending up in Foxboro. The Patriots, however, were not the first pro football team in Fenway. The Boston Redskins played four years here before heading to Washington in 1937. The Boston Yanks played here from 1944-48 prior to traveling to New York, Dallas, Baltimore (where they became the Colts) and now Indianapolis.
  • Constructed for the 1912 season, the new ballpark was named by then Red Sox owner John I. Taylor because it was built in an area of Boston known as the Fens. As Taylor said, "It's in that section of Boston, isn't it? Then call it Fenway Park."
  • Taylor was also the person who changed the club's name from the Pilgrims to the Red Sox in 1907.
  • The biggest baseball crowd at Fenway ever was 47,627 for a Yankees doubleheader on September 22, 1935.
  • After World War II, more stringent fire laws and league rules prohibited the overcrowding that was so common in the 1930s. The current capacity of Fenway Park is 36,108 for night games and 35,692 for day games.
  • Fenway Park has one of the last hand-operated scoreboards in the Major Leagues in the left-field wall. Green and red lights are used to signal balls, strikes, and outs.
  • Each scoreboard number used to indicate runs and hits measures 16 inches by 16 inches and weighs three pounds. The numbers used for errors, innings, and pitcher's numbers measure 12 inches by 16 inches, and weigh two pounds each.
  • One seat in the right field bleachers is painted red to mark the spot where the longest measurable home run ever hit inside Fenway Park landed. Ted Williams hit the home run on June 9, 1946 off Fred Hutchinson of the Detroit Tigers. The blast was measured at 502 feet. Legend says that the ball crashed through the straw hat of the man sitting in the seat — Section 42, Row 37, Seat 21.
  • No player has ever hit a home run over the right-field roof at Fenway Park.
  • The screen behind Fenway's home plate that protects fans and allows foul balls to roll back down onto the field was the first of its kind in the Major Leagues.

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May 8, 2007 - 1:27am
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