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#pounditWednesday, June 7, 2023

Red Sox owner wants to rename Yawkey Way for racism reasons

Yawkey Way

Boston Red Sox owner John Henry thinks it’s time to make a change around Fenway Park.

Henry wants to lead an effort to get the city of Boston to rename Yawkey Way, the street that sits behind the Green Monster at Fenway Park.

Yawkey Way is named after former Sox owner, Tom Yawkey, who owned the team from 1933-1976. Under Yawkey, the Red Sox were the last team to integrate, waiting until 1959 before having a black player on the team. He discussed with The Boston Herald his desire to make the change.

“The Red Sox don’t control the naming or renaming of streets,” Henry told The Boston Herald. “But for me, personally, the street name has always been a consistent reminder that it is our job to ensure the Red Sox are not just multi-cultural, but stand for as many of the right things in our community as we can – particularly in our African-American community and in the Dominican community that has embraced us so fully. The Red Sox Foundation and other organizations the Sox created such as Home Base have accomplished a lot over the last 15 years, but I am still haunted by what went on here a long time before we arrived.”

Yawkey Way is a public street, so any change would have to be made by the city. But if the Red Sox lead a movement, they could help invoke a change.

If Henry has his way, the street would be named after David Ortiz — either as David Ortiz Way or Big Papi Way. Though Ortiz was a Red Sox legend, even his legacy is complicated by his ties to PED allegations. Henry’s solution could also be problematic.


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