The Boston Red Sox Are World Series Champions (Again)
There it is! The streak is over. I finally have won a bet against Louie and it’s all because he decided to come into my favorite sport and think he was going to take my money. I wasn’t entirely right with my prediction on Can’t Be Stopped. I never would have imagined the World Series would be over in 5 games, but here we are. Boston wrapped up the series with a 5-1 victory over the Dodgers in the final game on Sunday night.
Watching this series, if you aren’t a fan of baseball, I suggest you get acquainted. What sport exists where the conversation for MVP involves a 35 year old backup player? Insert Steve Pearce and the insane amount of jubilation surrounding the outcomes of his at-bats.
Okay, I get it. Most people had to make it through the marathon that was Game 3. I understand how much of a turn off seven and a half hours of baseball can be, but man it was worth it to see what happened next.
After falling behind in Game 4 by four runs (a scenario where the Dodgers were an unblemished 54-0 in the prior instances this season), the Red Sox scored all nine of their runs in the last three innings of the game. A team that saw their offense disappear momentarily had their swagger back. And that was mostly without the stars of the offense putting up numbers.
Game 5 saw a conflicting number of narratives. The Red Sox sent David Price out to the mound instead of Chris Sale rematching against Clayton Kershaw. Would Price continue to exorcise his postseason demons? Or would Kershaw put his to bed for a night with the kind of dominant performance expected out of him?
I guess Steve Pearce didn't care about Kershaw's struggles ending. The elder statesmen, starting at first base, put his team up with a 405 foot shot to center field in the opening frame and I know Kershaw had to have been rattled. The fireworks wouldn’t stop there. He would add another solo blast in the top of the 8th as insurance and prompt more reactions on social media.
Steve Pearce continued to etch his name into postseason lore, but the Dodgers were only able to muster one run after another playoff hero went yak himself. David Freese launched a solo shot as the leadoff man in the bottom of the 1st.
Kershaw wouldn’t see another run of support from that point on. He didn’t do himself any favors by surrendering four runs all on homers. This night wasn’t about Kershaw, as so many October nights seem to unfold when he’s involved. Pitching-wise, David Price brought his best when it mattered the most. At one point, he sat down 14 straight Dodger batters and despite his previous narratives, he wouldn’t fold for another game.
A good friend of mine used to tell me all the time, “It’s not how you start, it’s how you finish Collins.” David Price pitching to the tune of sub-2.00 era in his final three postseason games qualifies as clutch. He's always had the talent and ability to dominate games, but he had never parlayed it into postseason success for sustained periods of time until this season. But he won his third straight postseason start after Sunday's win.
The World Series is usually the place where everything is magnified, dissecting, exposed, etc. The Dodgers will have their shortcomings analyzed all winter and rightfully so. The Red Sox weren’t supposed to dispatch them in five games. But despite some skepticism of their competition from yours truly, the Boston Red Sox truly were the best team in baseball from start to finish. Sorry LA, Boston is going to take this round.
To the victor goes the spoils and I will gladly collect my winnings. But enough about me. Congratulations to Boston and all of their loyal fans on their 4th title in 15 seasons.