Everyone said they couldnʼt do it, but they did. In one of the most memorable series in baseball history, the Boston Red Sox came back from three games to none to beat the New York Yankees for the American League pennant. Never in Major League Baseball history has a team come back to win from such a deficit, but the so called cursed Red Sox may have forces from the beyond on their side this time. They just kept coming back, often an out, a pitch, or a base hit away from elimination. After the game four Yankee hit-fest, the Sox were on the brink of a sweep. Game 4 was the first of a pair of consecutive extra innings games that both ended with a hit from David Ortiz. Ortiz is hitting an impressive .444 this postseason. In game four it was a two-run walk-off homer off Mariano Rivera and in game five anRBI single in the top of the 14th. The fans at Fenway couldnʼt stand to even watch. Rally caps were in full effect and eyes were covered. The feeling at Fenway was one of hope. Then it was back to Yankee Stadium and the rowdy fans in the Bronx. The House that Ruth Built was prepared to close it out. Curt Shilling pitched brilliantly with a stitched leg against Jon Lieber, amid two reversed umpiring decisions. Mark Bellhornʼs fourth-inning three-run homer was initially called a double, and Alex Rodriguez was called for interference after an attempt to slap the ball out of the glove of Sox pitcher Bronson Arroyo, putting a haul to a Yankees rally.
Players were called off the field as projectiles form the stands were thrown. Soon after, a team of police in riot gear came on to the field, congregating along both foul lines for the rest of the game. Game sevenʼs early heroics came from the most unexpected of places. Full-bearded Johnny Damon, after hitting .304 during the regular season and just .171 in the ALCS, hit a grand slam in the second, giving the Sox a 6-0 lead.
This was after a two-run homer from David Ortiz in the first. It was suddenly quiet in the Bronx. The Yanks were hitless in the second but in the third Derek Jeter singled to left, scoring Miguel Cairo. At his next at-bat after the grand slam, Johnny Damon homered, scoring Orlando Cabrera, further silencing Yankees fans and bringing the lead to a commanding8-1.
Both teams were scoreless until the eigth, when Terry Francona brought in Pedro Martinez to relieve Derek Lowe in what could have been the biggest bonehead move of the century. If there was anything that could awake the fans at Yankee stadium it was the opportunity to barrage Martinez with the infamous “Whoʼs your daddy?” chants. Francona had awoken the beast. Hideki Matsui then doubled to deep right.
Next up, Bernie Williams doubled to deepright center scoring Matsui. Kenny Lofton then singled to center scoring Williams. It was now 8-3 Red Sox Pedro then struck out John Olerud followed by a Miguel Cairo fly-out. Pedro appeared rattled and should have sat this one for a possible game one World series start. Mark Bellhorn later homered in the eight and Trot Nixon scored on a sacrifice fly from Orlando Cabrera in the ninth. It was 10-3 Boston going into the bottom of the ninth.
The Yankees couldnʼt summon the demons. Bernie Williams grounded out to second and Jorge Posada popped out to second. Babe Ruth must have been out to lunch with Ted Williams. Ruben Sierra grounded out to second.
It was over. The Boston Red Sox came back form 3-0 to beat the New York Yankees. They will face the St. Louis Cardinals in their first World Series since 1986. The Cardinals are coming off another 7 game series against the Houston Astros. St. Louis won game seven at home capitalized by a Larry Walker single to shallow right, scoring Marlon Anderson. The Red Sox will attempt to win their first World Series since 1918. Curse or no curse it should be an exciting series.