The Red Sox and Their World Series Glory

Sophia Vlahakis

It took 86 years for the Red Sox to win the World Series title after 1918. The most loyal, passionate fan could have lived a healthy life without seeing the Red Sox take the title. This is what made the 2004 win huge for Boston. The Red Sox swept the Cardinals and the Curse of the Bambino was finally lifted. The World Series win in 2018 makes the Red Sox the current defending champions and makes for their fourth World Series in fifteen years.  This includes wins in ’04, ’07, ’13 and now ’18. Each of these World Series has a special meaning to Bostonians, especially since the 86 year drought proved how incredibly special and difficult they are to come by.

The Curse of the Bambino refers to the 86 years the Red Sox went without winning a World Series. After a poor season in 1919, the Red Sox traded Babe Ruth to the Yankees. After the drought, the Yankees went on to win countless titles and to become one of the most successful franchises ever. It had seemed that the Red Sox were cursed and therefore unable to win.  The curse was felt when Boston went up against the Mets in 1986 in the World Series. In game six, the score was tied in the tenth inning. However, when a ground ball went through Bill Buckner’s legs, the Mets scored a run and won. In game seven the Mets took the title and Boston went home again without a World Series. The Red Sox fighting for the title in 2004 felt like a miracle. The pressure of ending the drought was intense on the players, but on a team with Red Sox greats like Pedro Martinez, David Ortiz and series MVP, Manny Ramirez, this 2004 team was playing like their lives depended on it.  After losing the first three games to the Yankees in the American League Championship Series, Boston came back to win four consecutive games.  This amazing turnaround led to one of the most exciting series in league playoff history.  On a roll, Boston beat the St. Louis Cardinals in four straight games. After the win, Red Sox nation celebrated one for the ages. Boston knew all too well that the next championship could very well be in another century.

The 2007 win proved the legitimacy and dominance of the Boston Red Sox. Red Sox fans did not have to wait another 86 years for a World Series, which was what fans were expecting. The Red Sox went from winning five titles between 1903-1918 to not winning one until the 2000’s. Going into the postseason, Boston not only had the best American League (AL) record, but also the best in the majors.  The Red Sox swept the Angels for the American League Division Series, won in game seven of the AL Championship Series against the Indians, and swept the Colorado Rockies in the World Series. The Red Sox were playing to win and become a competitive and consistently successful franchise.

There is nothing quite like redemption and that perhaps could be the word to describe the 2013 season. The bombings during the Boston Marathon were extremely tragic, and Fenway Park was one of the few places that remained a sanctuary. People could divert their attention and find joy in a baseball game played by their hometown heroes on their own field. The first game after the tragedy resulted in a win for Boston over Kansas City. The Red Sox did not wear their usual jerseys but ones that said “Boston” to illustrate the city was fighting together. As the season played out Boston remained dominant and was motivated to keep moving forward. Throughout the season, Boston played every game with their heads held high until the third out of the ninth inning. Going into September leading the AL East, the Sox broke records, hit milestones and created streaks. In the postseason, the Red Sox remained dominant going in tied with the Cardinals for the best record. After series against Tampa Bay and the Tigers, Boston defeated the St. Louis Cardinals in the World Series. In game six, the Red Sox won with a score of 6-1, in a game that went from counting runs to counting outs. The World Series title brought joy to the city of Boston and gave people something to celebrate. It was a step that would contribute to Boston returning back to normal. The Red Sox showed with their determined attitudes, that they and their loyal fans were, in fact, Boston Strong and no one could take away their pride.

Most of the time, the team that wins a championship is not the team that had the best record or was most dominant. Many times the teams that are successful hit a rough patch. Though this year, consistency was a major factor in the 2018 season. From spring training to post season, the Red Sox had the best record. Boston did not choke during the season or turn their winning streak into a losing streak like the Mets had done, but continued to be successful. Everyone waited for the Red Sox’s season to go downhill and for sports critics to say “it was too good to be true,” but now critics are debating if the 2018 Red Sox team may just be the best in history. The Red Sox went into the post season with 108 wins; the Yankees, who had the second-best record, were eight games behind. The Sox had an all-star team this season. Brock Holt became the only player ever to hit a cycle (hitting a single, double, triple and homerun in one game) in the World Series. Mookie Betts had the best batting average (.364) in all of the majors, with J.D. Martinez in second with a .330. Steven Pearce had eight RBIs in a five-game span. Additionally, the Red Sox pitching seemed almost unhittable. Closer, Joe Kelly had a post season ERA of 0.79. Nathan Eovaldi pitched six innings of relief in the record eighteen inning game of the World Series and had 10 outs in relief pitching against the Astros for the AL series. David Price became an unlikely hero, pitching frequently and well on short rest, despite his previous postseason pitching failures. Chris Sale was one of the best starting pitchers over the course of this season and in post season, he also pitched in relief. The Red Sox had an all-star roster that reflected they were worthy of the title and not just lucky.

The Red Sox have come a long way in the past fifteen years. There was a time where it seemed like Boston would never win again, but now they are unstoppable. The Red Sox are a dominant team but the wins count for more than just a record. Now, when the Boston fans enter Fenway Park, they know that they are cheering for world champions and the next World Series may be right around the corner.  It seems like the Sox are making up for the 86 year drought and they are certainly doing a great job.