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Undecided still? Time to tune in

The race to succeed Tom Menino as Boston’s next mayor is coming down to the wire. Recent polls indicate that as many as one-third of the city’s voters remain undecided about whom they will vote for in the Sept. 24 preliminary election.

That’s really not a surprise. Voters across the city have a tough choice to make, given a field that includes several outstanding candidates. Dorchester is in a particularly precarious spot: Our neighborhood is home to six of the twelve candidates on the ballot: John Barros, Charles Clemons, Charlotte Golar Richie, Marty Walsh, Bill Walczak, and Charles Yancey. Many voters we know have narrowed their list of favorites down to two or three, but are stuck there. Many of us know more than one of these candidates personally and that makes the final call all the more challenging.

But choose we must – and these first three weeks of September will offer a new lens to use in judging the field. There will be televised debates, commercials ,and mailboxes stuffed to the brim with brochures and postcards.

Last week, the Reporter posted surveys that we sent to each of the mayoral campaigns back in July. Ten of the candidates returned the questionnaires and they can be read in their entirety on our website, DotNews.com. In our view, these surveys offer a unique look at the candidates from the Dorchester vantage point, with several neighborhood-specific questions that aren’t likely to make it into citywide stories or TV debates. But, for local voters who’ve cut down their range to one, two, or more good candidates, the Reporter survey offers a good way to differentiate and choose.

– Bill Forry

Not to forget that other race
As the Boston Dozen work the campaign trail in the countdown to Sept. 24, the baseball maestros at Fenway Park will be making their run to the playoffs against the usual suspects in the American League East. Despite a recent so-so stretch, the Red Sox seem to be sturdy in talent and resolve for their stretch run, but their fans aren’t likely to forget the many Septembers past when their team has fallen short at the finish line. Better to think positively about 2013 by remembering historic 2004 and 2007, the last time it all came together.

Among the roster stars that year were players named Ramirez and Lowell and Youkilis and Varitek and Beckett and Schilling and Matsuzaka and Drew (J.D.), and two guys named Ortiz and Pedroia. Lesser contributors were men named Ellsbury and Lester and Buchholz.

The general manager was Theo Epstein and the manager was Terry Francona.

The 2013 roster contains the last five listed above in starring roles and gritty players named Nava and Victorino and Drew (Stephen) and Napoli and Gomes and Saltalamacchia and Lackey and Peavy and Dempster.
The general manager now is Ben Cherington, and the manager is John Farrell, the pitching coach in 2007.

Six years has been long enough; it’s time.

– Tom Mulvoy