8/8/2014 2:45 P.M. ET
Accomplished Chiklis holds baseball close
Actor, a lifelong Red Sox fan, proud to pass love for game down to kids
By Alyson Footer / MLB.com
He may live, breathe and make a living in Los Angeles, but when it comes to sports -- namely, baseball -- actor Michael Chiklis has his heart firmly planted elsewhere.
That's not to say he's not a Dodgers fan. He considers that his second team, as do many actors who have migrated west to pursue Hollywood careers. But the best Chiklis can offer is a dual loyalty of sorts, because first and foremost, he's a Bostonian and, by definition, a Red Sox fan.
Chiklis, the most recent celebrity to grace the "Express Written Consent" suite at Dodger Stadium, is from Andover, Mass., which is, like most regions surrounding Boston, Red Sox territory. Chiklis' passions run deep and were instilled at an early age, first by his father and later by his grandmother. Chiklis remembers watching his grandmother cook with one hand and rub his head with the other, while screaming at the television.
Screaming about the Red Sox, apparently, was a way of life. Consider the exchange Chiklis had with Grandma minutes after the Sox sealed a sweep over the Cardinals in the 2004 World Series.
Chiklis was on location shooting the "Fantastic Four" series during the Fall Classic, which meant he was in Canada. Unable to talk the show's hierarchy into letting him take a quick leave of absence to attend Game 4, Chiklis found himself sitting in his apartment, alone, with an unpopped bottle of bubbly in his hand.
The Red Sox recorded the final out, and chaos ensued. Well, sort of. As much chaos as one man alone can create in the middle of Vancouver.
Then, the phone rang. Chiklis picked it up and just started screaming. Turns out his grandmother was on the line.
And, well, she was screaming, too.
"She says, 'The last time these guys did this, I was 1!'" Chiklis recalled. "Best quote of the century -- literally."
Many of Chiklis' acting gigs have required him to play serious characters in drama series, such as Commissioner Tony Scali on the ABC police drama "The Commish." He also played LAPD detective Vic Mackey on FX's "The Shield," another police drama, as well as The Thing in the "Fantastic Four" film series and Jim Powell on the ABC science-fiction comedy-drama "No Ordinary Family."
Chiklis, who plays real-life De La Salle High School coach Terry Eidson in the upcoming film "When The Game Stands Tall" (out Aug. 22), has never lost his Boston roots, remaining loyal to his Red Sox and Patriots.
Chiklis is also currently shooting "American Horror Story: Freak Show," pitched to him by director Ryan Murphy, Chiklis' friend.
"I found it terrifying and exciting," Chiklis said. "I'm going to be out of my comfort zone, which I'm looking forward to."
Chiklis' on-screen persona couldn't be more different from his real-life personality. Chiklis is jovial, engaging and really funny, and the passion he likely inherited from his grandmother shows through with each story he tells.
It seems that he's passed some of this on to his kids, too. During a recent drive to school with his 15-year-old daughter -- who is, unsurprisingly, a Red Sox fan -- Chiklis enjoyed a heartwarming exchange with his daughter.
"You know Dad, I really love baseball," she said. "There's no time limit. It's really like a metaphor for life."
Chiklis, of course, knows this to be true, as do many fans who have poetically theorized a similar sentiment over time. But how did his 15-year-old know this?
"I said, 'Did you read that?'" Chiklis said. "She said, 'No, I just really feel like it's just like life.'"
Maybe she picked up a few pointers from Pops, who, unsolicited, offered up his idea of a perfect day.
"Probably my favorite place in the world is being at a baseball park," Chiklis said. "What can go wrong at a baseball park? It's the greatest place in the world and always reminds me of having a good time, being with my family, watching the boys of summer, having a beer and enjoying my life."
Grandma, certainly, would agree. Even if she has to scream a little to do so.