From the Archive:
January 27, 2005
[Doug Mentkiewicz steals the 'Final Out of the World Series' ball]
Yuh know, its kinda funny. in that ironing kinda way.
Bill Buckner, the event, not the man, assuming, for the moment, that the stability of matter is not explained at a deeper level as the regular pulsation of event-like energy interactions, never would have happened if John Mcnamara wasn't concerned with the photo op and the symbolism of THE MOMENT, y'know, the one where the sox finally won it all.
Johnny Mac knew that if the Sox won in the 10th inning of game 6 in '86 that the image of the Stanley throwing a sinker, inducing a grounder to Owen who threw on over to first, to Billy Buc, the number 3 hitter with over 100 rbis on the year, would last forever. so, he didn't put in Dave Stapleton, because 100 years later, it didn't seem right that the photo would have, well, Dave Stapleton in it, not Billy Buc.
i sure as hell hope you know where this is going. because for the rest of forever, our image, looking back, is of Keith Foulke and Doug Mientk... (i no longer have any obligation whatsoever to try and spell that name), y'know, the perennial all star closer, and that guy who hit .230 and played 8 innings over 2 months, the guy who stole the ball and wouldn't give it back and was found floating in the Charles back in '07. the purity of that moment is tainted by what we know immediately followed, and how contingent and almost, now in retrosepct, degrading it is that Mentkayvich was there at all. the gall... the ball.
so the man who deserved the ball, Buckner, couldn't even catch it in the first place, and the man who sure as shit don't deserve it ran off and hid it in a fortress where even Mookie Wilson and Ray Knight can't get at it.
all in all, maybe Johnny Mac was right.
on the other hand, fuck that fucker. I mean, I aint' saving the pixels from the tv I watched it on that night. It's just a symbol.
in the words of a wise coconut cracking horse simulating peasant, 'its only a model.'