The Boston Red Sox are preparing for the first game of the season, which will feature the Baltimore Orioles heading to Fenway Park. Prior to Opening Day, a new billboard has appeared right next to the iconic stadium, one that mocks the team. The message expresses thanks to the Red Sox for trading Mookie Betts to the Los Angeles Dodgers ahead of the World Series-winning season.
A photo surfaced on Monday that showed the new addition to the Boston skyline. According to TMZ, the billboard is on the top of a building on Brookline Avenue, located yards away from the ballpark. The company responsible for the billboard, Pantone 294, then posted video footage showing exactly how close to the stadium the mocking message sits. CEO Alex Soto explained that Betts' play during the World Series served as the inspiration.
This billboard can be found at 60–62 Brookline Ave Boston, MA 02215 RIGHT NEXT to Fenway Park. pic.twitter.com/WQSygsAxbn— Pantone 294 (@Pantone294) March 22, 2021
"I recorded my live reaction as Mookie hit that home run in the eighth and I knew that was it," Soto said, per DodgerBlue.com. "I tried sending Red Sox management thank you email but it kept getting bounced back. I think I had the wrong emails, so figured a billboard outside the stadium would do the job." Soto also explained that getting the billboard approved took months of work and negotiations.
The Dodgers originally acquired Betts in a blockbuster trade in February 2020. This deal, which took place during then-President Donald Trump's final State of the Union address, featured Betts and David Price heading to the Dodgers. The massive transaction also featured the Minnesota Twins and several other players.
At the time, the Red Sox faced criticism due to dealing away a "generational talent" and someone that had recently won MVP instead of working out a contract extension. The Dodgers snatched up Betts and awarded him a monster 12-year contract extension worth $365 million. He responded with five runs scored during the World Series, including two home runs.
Betts is now set to begin his second full season with the Dodgers after the stunning 2020 trade. Fans of the team are ready to see him in action and are expressing their excitement in a variety of ways. The new billboard next to Fenway Park is just the boldest.