The Commish Online www.thecommishonline.com
Boston Makes History, Yanks are History
October 21, 2004
Many things in the media are subject to hyperbole, especially come playoff time. One that comes to mind is the postseason record for home runs held by Bernie Williams. Treated to as many as 3 rounds each year goes a long way toward achieving that record, while legends like Mantle and Mays had to win the pennant just to get a shot at 4 or more playoff games.
Another subject that has been hyped in recent days is Boston's improbable comeback in the ALCS after trailing 3 games to none. In this case, however, the hype, the talk, and the pomp were all justified by the circumstance. Regardless of the era, it is never an easy task to lose 3 straight games, then beat the very same team 4 straight times, including twice in their park. In fact, as everyone knows by now, it has never happened in the history of Major League Baseball (0-25). Until now.
Sure, the Red Sox were actually favored in the series before it started, so the net result should not be compared to the biggest upsets in sports history. Impressive, yes, but this is not the 1980 USA Hockey team. The hype is deserved for the comeback, not for the overall result. Some may argue that Boston shouldn't have put themselves in such a hole to begin with (which is true), but the fact is they did, and they made history climbing their way out.
Curses are for people desperate to spread the blame, but you can't deny the fact that Boston has a recent history of getting thisclose and failing. The Carmines aren't out of the woods yet. Steinbrenner has been defeated, but that doesn't put a ring on Papi's finger. For the first time in years, though, Boston's attitude seems to be of the championship variety, and the pieces are in place on the field as well. Before the playoffs started, I said Anaheim and Boston had the best chance to win it all, and the Red Sox's recent surge has done nothing to change my mind. Like the ALCS, the World Series doesn't promise to be a smooth ride, but this unshaven bunch from New England are poised to hoist another trophy next week.
Check out TCO's 2004 Season Preview for an April flashback to see how well The Commish predicted this season's outcomes.