May 7, 1991

May 7, 1991, Fenway Park. Twins @ Red Sox, Scott Erickson pitching to Wade Boggs.

30 years ago today a friend and I walked up to the ticket window looking for two. It just happened to be precisely 6pm, and unbeknownst to us it was the time when unused player’s tickets were released to the public. This is well before Stub Hub and “Premium Pricing” existed. We scored two right behind home plate, first row.

I was a poor community college student who had just acquired a 80-200mm lens. I think the body was a Nikon N6006. I had them with me, along with some Fuji 800 film.

I didn’t shoot athletics much at Hillsborough Community College, in fact, I wrote nearly as much as I shot. Plus we only published once every three weeks. My student publications scholarship covered my tuition that year, which at $20 a credit hour was a whopping $600. But it helped me afford that lens.

I consider this to be my first sports photograph. It likely isn’t, but it’s the first one that remains in my archive, which nearing 700,000 images online, and likely another 200,000 images in “analog storage.”

After getting my AA, I transferred to Miami, and eventually became their contract photographer. In my first year, Miami baseball went to the College World Series, where the infamous Warren Morris ended our championship dreams with two outs in the bottom of the 9th. Our shortstop was so devastated after we lost he laid on the ground for what seemed an eternity.

That shortstop now occupies the dugout to the right side of this image. He is the manager of the Boston Red Sox.

Life is a crazy ride.

Published by

JC Ridley

JC Ridley is the long-time team photographer for the Miami Hurricanes and Florida Atlantic Owls, with over 25 years of experience in the photography industry. His images have been published in numerous publications, including Sports Illustrated. JC even spent seven seasons as a contributing photographer for the National Football League.

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