Well, well, well, what we all thought was one of the best teams in Major League Baseball history, turned out as one of the biggest “choke jobs” in sports history. Now there was one thing that bothered me, really bothered me about this choke job, and that’s the fact that it didn’t bother me much at all, in fact it felt all too familiar. Pre 2004, this was a consistent feeling in September & October, something you came to expect of the Sox teams year in, & year out. But after the ’04 World Series I thought those feelings were gone forever
In the spring of 2011, the Boston Red Sox and Theo Epstein had (on paper) what many experts thought was the favoite to go to the World Series out of the American league. Had the season been played from May through the end of August, that might have been the case. However, unlike the Boston Bruins, the Sox counterpart from the NHL, They didn’t have the excuse of a Championship hangover, and even though April Fools Day lasted an entire month, the boys of summer made it into September with a 9-1/2 game lead in the Wild card race.
With the additions of Adrian Gonzalez, & Carl Crawford, along with what Sox brass hoped would be bounce back seasons from ace Josh Beckett, & John Lackey, Epstein & Co. thought they had the recipe for success, and that may have been true, take Gonzalez, Crawford, Beckett, Lackey & stir in a Pinch of Papi (David Ortiz), a dash of Jon Lester, & a twist of Kevin Youkilis, & you should have the makings of something pretty darn good, unfortunately it seems like some of the ingredients spoiled (rotten) long before the main coarse was ready to serve.
Okay, you probably didn’t need a cheap cooking analogy to figure out that I’m taking the cooks side in all of this, & the cook in this case was Terry Francona. Now someone who won two World Series in eight seasons & had to deal with Manny Ramirez through most of that. It’s hard to believe he suddenly lost the team at 8:45 pm September 5th in Toronto. In this case the team lost Francona, who may have been the best skipper they’ve had in decades. Now for those of you who don’t mind a good cooking analogy, maybe it’s time we get away from spending all our money on the brand names, sometimes the generic brands (Kevin Millar, Bill Miller, Orlando Cabrera) are just as tasty, as for me.. » Read more: The 2011 Boston Red Sox Season, Was History in The Making