Boston fans know what it’s like to be in a World Series drought (it was a looong stretch from 1918 to 2004), so BU Athletics stepped up to help out one of the teams currently playing for baseball’s top prize.
The last time the Cleveland Indians won the World Series—68 years ago—it was against the Boston Braves on Braves Field, home of the Braves. It is now Nickerson Field, home of the Terriers. BU men’s and women’s soccer and lacrosse teams play there and it’s also used by several club sports.
Inspired in part by the Boston Bruins’ bringing ice shavings from TD Garden with them to Vancouver for the Stanley Cup Finals in 2011, BU Athletics decided to ship some good luck dirt from Nickerson Field to Cleveland’s Progressive Field.
Leo Paré, Athletics director of digital marketing and media, says the idea was hatched during a brainstorming meeting for the department’s weekly Throwback Thursday social media event. “Someone mentioned that the last time the Indians won the World Series was on Braves Field, and we thought we might send them some kind of good luck charm,” Paré says. “We reached out to the Indians front office, and they liked the idea.”
Athletics shot a video of BU mascot Rhett the Terrier scooping up dirt from one of Nickerson’s flower beds (most of the area is now covered by FieldTurf). The dirt was then poured into an envelope and overnighted to Cleveland. The Indians responded with a photo on Twitter, saying that the dirt will be put in an exhibition at Progressive Field commemorating the 1948 World Series. For the record, the Indians beat the Braves 4-3 in game six.
The Indians need all the luck they can get in what is already a nail-biter of a World Series. They swept the Chicago Cubs 6-0 Tuesday night in game one in Cleveland, but the Cubs took a 5-1 win Wednesday evening. The battle resumes today in Chicago, where they’ll play games three through five, before (possibly) returning to Cleveland next Tuesday.
Whoever wins, expect much celebrating. The Cubs are in an even longer World Series drought than the Indians: the last time they clinched a championship was 1908, putting the Red Sox’ 86 years in the shade.