Thursday, January 1, 2015

Teams that make us proud

2014 will be remembered as a year most Red Sox fans would like to forget. A miserable record and a weak follow up to the 2013 championship left many of us feeling relieved that the painful season was over. Time will tell if we look back and say it was the year we “lost Lester” or (hopefully) as the point when the team was able to step back from a losing trend.

Thankfully 2014 gave us some other teams to cheer and since we’ll soon be turning to 2015, I’d like to end the year on a positive note with some words about teams we can be proud of today and expect big things from in the years to come.

Cumberland Little League Team. The whole state rooted for these talented boys as they fought their way through the Little League World Series last summer. When their last rally failed, their coach, Dave Belisle, delivered a speech for the ages, reminding all of us why it is so important to encourage our children to compete and why it’s even more important to keep it in perspective.

Team Alvimedica. The Volvo Ocean Race took a dramatic turn earlier this month when Team Vestas Wind ran aground at night on the leg between Cape Town and Abu Dhabi. As the boat was battered by waves, Rhode Island’s sailing community held its collective breath as Team Alvimedica, skippered by Bristol’s own Charlie Enright, pulled out of the race stood by overnight to aid their opponent. Thankfully no one was injured and Alvimedica rejoined the race, but the sportsmanship shown by our local team will not soon be forgotten.

Little Rhody.  After a long slog through the Great Recession and the even longer recovery here in Rhode Island, it seems as if brighter days are finally just ahead.  A spirited race for governor gave all of us a deep dive into the important issues facing our state and fresh faces on Smith Hill should help to restore some optimism to our state’s low self-esteem. While the “A” that Governor Lincoln Chafee gave his term may create some spirited debates, unemployment is finally down and Governor-elect Raimondo is laser-focused on growing our economy— something that we all agree needs to happen.

While we wait for Fenway to defrost and for Opening Day, it’s been fun to have other teams to root for and other causes to support. And don’t forget, there’s always next year: pitchers and catchers report on February 20th.

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