Here's how an Irishman joined Red Sox Nation and cheered his team to World Series victory


Boston Red Sox relief pitcher Koji Uehara and catcher David Ross celebrate the final out of the 2013 World Series at Fenway Park.


Greg M. Cooper-USA TODAY Sports

Boston is celebrating its third World Series championship in the last ten seasons. The Red Sox beat the St. Louis Cardinals at Fenway Park 6-1 to take the series in six games.

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Many Boston fans stayed up most of the night to celebrate, but spare a thought for Sox fan Garret Pearse, who had to go to great lengths to keep up with his favorite team from his home in Wicklow, Ireland.

Pearse came to be a member of the Red Sox Nation by way of rugby, sort of. As a kid, he was given a blue cap with a big red B on it by a rugby player visiting from the US. It was hardly more than a hat at the time, but enough to give him baseball fever, eventually.

As it happened, Pearse got a job in Boston after college and was immediately told to go to Fenway Park.

“I remember, walking through from under the stands into Fenway, where you see the park itself — and at that moment I was hooked,” he said.

“It really is a magical place,” said Pearse, who has been watching afternoon games with his son from Ireland. Of course, the son is now hooked, as well. The new convert has chosen outfielder Jacoby Ellsbury as his favorite player, so dad will have to explain the whole free-agent thing to him soon.

Pearse plays himself in the Irish league, where he is a pitcher — albeit with a fastball that is somewhat slower than Koji Uehara’s splitter, as he freely admits.