While it might be getting tired for some in Red Sox Nation, the Boston Red Sox are not planning to scratch “Sweet Caroline” from the Fenway Park playlist.
Neil Diamond’s “Sweet Caroline” has emerged over the years as a Fenway Park staple. The song reportedly began working its way into the Fenway Park music lineup on an occasional basis in the 1990s, before becoming a full-fledged tradition in 2002 under then-team executive Charles Steinberg.
It has since become part of Fenway Park lore–it is played during the middle of the eighth inning at every home game–and has become something of a staple at other sports venues. Some Red Sox fans are expressing fatigue over the song’s place at Fenway Park, as The Boston Globe found in a recent story, but the Red Sox indicate that the song is not going anywhere. More from The Boston Globe:
“Sweet Caroline,” like Diamond himself, has proven to be durable over the years, successfully dodging periodic calls for its retirement, including one from this newspaper. And though the team’s dismal 2012 season did prompt the front office to briefly discuss doing away with the song, a Red Sox official said in an e-mail recently that the song was “here to stay.”
“It’s an easy ping-pong ball to slam,” says Steinberg, current president of the Pawtucket Red Sox and one of the song’s ardent supporters. “But my heavens, there are baseball franchises all over the world that long for a piece of music that galvanizes, unifies, and invigorates their fans.”
As noted, “Sweet Caroline” has found its place as it other venues over the years, including those outside of baseball. Its ties to Fenway Park have always been a key part of its emergence at sports venues, and it appears that the song’s place on the ballpark’s playlist is secure.