Thursday, September 29, 2011

And So...

Two-thousand and four happened. There's nothing I can do to ever change it. The New York Yankees blew a three-games-to-none lead in the American League Championship Series. Yankees fans have been hearing about it ever since.

From the perspective of the Boston Red Sox, that ends now.


The Red Sox blew a nine-game lead in the Wild Card race early this morning. The Tampa Bay Rays - hardly a juggernaut - found a way to come back, capping it off with a 8-7 win tonight over the Yankees in St. Petersburg, after being down 7-0.

Now, don't let the fans tell you otherwise. According to the denizens of The Hub, it's Joe Girardi's fault for not pitching Mariano Rivera tonight, even though it was said that Mo would not pitch tonight because he pitched last night. Even Terry Francona, the classy manager of the Red Sox, said that the Yankees had earned the right to do whatever they wanted.

(Side note: I like Francona, and he should not take the fall for this.  Some of the blame - a lot of it - should go to so-called "wunderkind" Theo Epstein, who made some godawful free agent deals.  I'd take Francona as my manager - happily.)

To the victor goes the spoils. Had the Red Sox wanted to be a part of the postseason, they could have won a few more ballgames, instead of losing six of seven against the Orioles.

The Orioles.

Boston's collapse (and Atlanta's also) is easily as amazing as the Mets meltdown in 2007 and 2008, and, yes, that Yankees choke-job in 2004. Or for those who know their history, the Dodgers gag in 1951, and the Phillies in 1964.

I feel badly for the Sox fans that have a clue. I know many. Sadly their bad apples tend to ruin it for everyone else. I bet the smart ones are being pragmatic right now, despite the fact that they are licking some serious wounds right now.

When steroids talk began to circle around Alex Rodriguez, Andy Pettitte, and Roger Clemens, Sox fans were gleeful. Then Manny and Ortiz were suspected (if not outed). Funny how it quieted down.

The same applies now.

The playoffs begin Friday.

Oh, across town, much is being said about Jose Reyes pulling himself out of the Mets' last game so that he could be in position to win the NL batting crown. The way I look at it is that - a) Mets fans have nothing to root for, so who cares, and b) this is hardly a first. I clearly remember Wade Boggs (in his Boston days) hiding behind an injury in 1986 so that Don Mattingly couldn't catch him.

It is what it is. Some fans are outraged. For whatever reason (irrelevancy?), I'm not. The Mets bothered me more by denying the Yankees the opportunity to put their AAA team in Newark, NJ for a year while their stadium in Moosic, PA is rebuilt. I mean...really?

Oh, and for Tampa about showing up, fans? Get them a stadium or move them. What a joke. But the Rays will be fun to watch in these playoffs with their pitching.

Again, the playoffs begin Friday. The Yankees meet the Tigers at the Stadium (while I'm on the air calling Greenwich/New London at Cardinal Stadium).  The American League is wide open.  I hope the National League is just as crazy.

God I love baseball.


Scott Ericson said...

Nice try. Red Sox collapse was huge this year but you can't erase 2004 no matter how much you would like to. When the real chips were down in the post season the Yankees still choked a 3-0 lead away.

Rob Adams said...

Nice try yourself. You're entitled to your opinion, but this collapse falls in the same bucket. They're ALL collapses - '64 Cardinals, '07 and '08 Mets, '04 Yankees, even the Bruins in the NHL playoffs. They're all the same.

The point isn't that one is worse than tht other.

If you read the post, I said quite clearly that 2004 happened and it can't be erased.

The point is the Red Sox have joined the choke club.