In a twist that you just could not script any better, the Red Sox and the Yankees will kick off the 2005 season at Yankee Stadium. Then, and this is where it gets fun, the Red Sox will play the Yankees at the 2005 home opener at Fenway Park, which also happens to be when the Red Sox will be receiving their World Series rings. Nothing could be finer than having Jeter, A-Fraud, et al sitting through the ceremonies when the Red Sox get their rings and raise the World Championship banner at Fenway. Teddy Ballgame is smiling down on us.
Update: In one of the greatest scenes I’ve ever seen at Fenway, the Red Sox fans brought the house down when Mariano Rivera was introduced during the open day ceremonies. And like a true pro, Mariano took it all in stride with a huge smile. Class act (Mo, not the Yanks. :P )
Oh boy, did my Red Sox blow a doozy last night. That was a tough loss to swallow, I must say. Aaron Boone!! Aaron f****** Boone!! He was hitting a buck twenty five (.125) in the playoffs! I would have rather lost by 15 runs than lose that way. That’s the thing about the Red Sox, they always find the most miserable ways to lose. And to do it against the Yankees is just painful.
The Red Sox just did not get it done. And you could just feel it as the game progressed. They had the lead and they let it slip away. In this case, it was completely inept game management by Grady Little, the Red Sox manager. He should be fired by next month. He should have brought in Alan Embree from the bullpen in the 8th to take over for Pedro. The bullpen was pitching great – Timlin was fantastic, Embree was solid as was Williamson. It was so obvious. Is he really that dumb? Doesn’t he realize that any player is going to say “I’m fine” no matter how they really feel? And putting in Wakefield was not exactly the best move either. Yes, the Sox would not have been there without him after his two amazing performances eariler in the series, but he was just not the right pitcher for that situation.
But the Sox were playing with fire throughout the playoffs and it finally came back to haunt them. The only reason they were in the ALCS was because of the ineptitude of the Oakland A’s and their failure to close out the series. And between Millar, Ortiz, Mueller and especially Nomar, I think they were barely at the “Mendoza Line” (batting average of .200) with maybe 15 RBIs collectively . And Manny Ramirez could not drive in runners in scoring position to save his life. As always, good pitching trumps good hitting and that was especially evident for the Red Sox in these playoffs – not just against the Yankees but against the Athletics as well.
Sadly, the dreams of a Cubs vs. Red Sox series went up in smoke in the most painful of ways for both cities and both franchises. And the worst part is that now I have to deal with those blasted Yankee fans.
Oh, the Cubs, breaking hearts across the midwest and all of the nation. What an absolutely terrible way to get eliminated from the World Series playoffs. Its going to take a while for Chicago to get over this one, it seems to me.