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Dear Eli,

It was fun going with you to the baseball game Thursday. And I’m glad we stayed until the very end of the game, even if your favorite team, the Nats, lost.

You always have to stay until the end of the game. No matter how bad or how good it might seem for your team.

Yesterday was a good example of why it’s so important to understand the game is never over until the final out.

Last night in Yankee Stadium, it was the bottom of the 9th inning, and my heroes the Sox were ahead 3-2. There were two outs. One more and they’d beat the Evil Empire (the Yankees).

Disaster struck.

Instead of the final out, the Yankees hit a home run to tie the game.

Extra innings.

Nothing much happened for the next seven innings, although Friday had turned into Saturday.  Then, in the 16th inning, Big Papi, the great David Ortiz, hit a home run and put the Sox ahead 4-3.

Then, the Yankees got a home run in the bottom of the 16th when one of their players, Mark Teixeira, who was 34 years old when the game started and had turned 35 by the 16th inning, hit a home run.

Bummer. The game tied again, 4-4.

In the top 18th inning, again the Sox went ahead, 5-4.

And wouldn’t you know it, again the Yunkees tied it. Score now 5-5.

Then, in the 19th inning, after more than seven hours, the Sox went ahead 6-5.

This time, the bad guys didn’t tie it in the bottom of the inning, and the Sox won.

And that’s why you never, ever leave a game until the final out is made.

Never give up.