RIP, PawSox

Apparently this is old news but somehow I managed to miss it: the Pawtucket Red Sox are now the Worcester Red Sox, or WooSox.

Reading this story in today’s New York Times about the Sox’s old ballpark, McCoy Stadium, sitting tired and empty, bummed me out.

The first time I ever heard of the PawSox, or Pawtucket for that matter, was 40 years ago last month, after the longest game in pro baseball history, between the PawSox and the Rochester Red Wings. The Sox won, 3-2 in 33 innings.

The next time was a year later when Mark Fidrych signed a minor-league contact with the Red Sox and was assigned to Triple-A Pawtucket. I remember seeing a wire-service photo in The Detroit News of The Bird wearing a PawSox jersey (and I thought it was cool how it was basically a Red Sox uniform with “Paw” replacing “Red” on the front.)

When minor-league teams move, especially clubs with deep roots in a community, it seems to me that the new city can never appreciate the team as much as the city that lost it did.