Faithful Red Sox fans stake out spots ahead of championship parade






The Red Sox’ triumphant tour of Boston rolled into Government Center early Wednesday afternoon, wrapping up the city’s latest victory parade, which has become a cherished tradition for a city of champions.

On a classic New England fall day, colorful duck boats carried the team past tens of thousands of elated fans, many of whom had staked out roadside spots hours in advance.

People stood on benches, their cellphones lifted high in the air, to get a glimpse of their favorite Red Sox players.

Those waiting for the parade inside Center Plaza offices have the best seats in the house near Government Center, with signs posted to windows: “Go Red Sox,” “Boo Yah,” and of course, because this is Boston, “Yankees Suck.”

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The crowd went wild as Red Sox star David Price, dressed in a bright red “Do Damage” hoodie, recorded the festivities from one of the duck boats. As the boat rolled past, airhorns blasted and chants of “MVP! MVP!” broke out.


On another duck boat, former Red Sox hero David Ortiz hoisted a gleaming World Series trophy over his head in triumph.

At the front of the parade was a duck boat carrying the members of the Dropkick Murphys, whose songs have become Red Sox anthems over the past 15 years.

When the band’s boat reached Massachusetts Avenue and Boylston Street, one member called out: “You ready Mass Ave?!” as confettti flew into the air.

Sox pride was on full display: Fans dressed in the team’s jerseys and caps, while red, blue, and white confetti was shot out of cannons mounted to trucks driving the route.

These players are heroes in this town, and a few fans made the extra effort by tossing cans of beer to the players.

One of those beers struck Niamh Delaney, 20, in the face, and she was treated on scene by medics, she said. She may need to go to the hospital for stitches, she said.

“It was coming at like 15 miles an hour, that thing nailed me,” she Delaney, holding a tissue up to the gash on her nose.

The parade drove by at a good clip — many fans didn’t want to go home, and decided to follow the parade along its course.

Once they got to Government Center, some fans sang and danced along with music played over speakers, and began streaming away from Cambridge Street as soon as it ended.

Longtime team broadcaster Jerry Remy lifted his blue cap to the crowd, drawing chants of “Jerry, Jerry, Jerry!”

Remy is undergoing treatment for cancer, and at a kickoff ceremony at Fenway Park told fans he was “kicking cancer’s ass.”

At Fenway, the crowd roared when Red Sox manager Alex Cora appeared on stage.

“It was an amazing run, it was an amazing year,” he told fans. Cora thanked the team’s owners for hiring him last year.

“They gave me a shot,” he said. “They trusted me.”

Cora talked about the response in Boston when the Sox lost the second game of the American League Division Series, then came back to score 16 runs the following game.

“We lost game 2 and it was panicking here, everyone was, ‘whoa its over,’” Cora said. “We scored 16 at Yankee Stadium. Suck on it.”

World Series MVP Steve Pearce grew up a Red Sox fan, and said being part of a victory parade was a “dream come true.”

The championship was the team’s fourth since 2004, and the city’s 11th this century.

“You are living in the golden years, folks” Governor Charlie Baker told fans.

City officials had urged fans to take public transportation and fans took the advice — many MBTA parking lots, including Riverside, Wonderland, Alewife, and Quincy Adams, were full.

Some fans already had their favorite spots staked out hours before the parade started. Irene Kelley, of Melrose, snagged a front row seat just outside Park Street Station well before 8 a.m. She packed a lunch, a book, and brought a small chair, which she placed right against the parade barrier.

Kelley said the championship was particularly meaningful since her father, a longtime fan, died last year.

“I give him credit for this,” she said. “He was born in 1919 and followed them all of these years.”

Dugan Arnett of the Globe staff and Globe correspondents Allison Hagan, Morgan Hughes and John Hilliard contributed to this report.



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