I write that title as my blog post because tonight I had a whole slew of hits on my blog from many people Googling "Ryan Kalish" and "Jewish."
I was curious too, and I looked him up, and it turns out the Red Sox outfielder went to Red Bank Catholic High School in New Jersey. So for those of you who were curious, I guess that's your answer. (I read in an article in the Hartford Courant that Kalish is of Polish descent. His grandparents were sent to Germany during WWII to work for the Nazis, but there was no mention of their being Jewish. Many other articles I checked on the Internet about Kalish, like his Wikipedia page, made no mention of his being Jewish either. But if I am wrong, please do let me know and I'll be happy to post it.)
The Sox have also had a number of prominent Jewish players in recent years, like Kevin Youkilis, Gabe Kapler, Adam Stern and Craig Breslow, so I would think if Kalish was also of that faith it would have been written about or mentioned some place in that context.
UPDATE (8/20): I received a note here from a man named Michael who says he knew Ryan Kalish in Brookline, MA, and says that Ryan's dad is Jewish. Thank you, Michael.
Anyway, the aforementioned Mr. Kalish hit his first MLB home run tonight, and he picked some spot and some game to do it in: at Yankee Stadium, and it was the insurance the Red Sox needed as they won a very important opening game to a wrap around series with New York, 6-3. (And I guess that was the reason so many folks were curious as to Ryan's heritage.)
David Ortiz opened the festivities with a first inning home run, but Mark Teixeira hit a two-run shot off Clay Buchholz to make it 2-1. But the Sox answered that with three in the second to make it, 4-2, as NY catcher Francisco Cervelli dropped Mike Lowell's pop-up, and all the following runs that followed it were unearned.
Buchholz went 7 1/3 innings, allowed three runs on nine hits, while striking out four and walking none to get his 12th win. Daniel Bard and Jonathan Papelbon pitched hitless relief with Pap getting save number 27.
It was a huge, big time win for the Sox. They've now won 8 of 11. One win from the remaining three will give them a split they need from this weekend. They trail New York by 5, and Tampa Bay by 4 1/2 games, who lost in Toronto tonight, 2-1. Before the game, the Red Sox disabled Hideki Okajima, and brought up Felix Doubront, who will take his place in the pen.