In a year to remember, the Boston Red Sox clinch the World Series at home for the first time since 1918. It took six games in a hard-fought battle against the St. Louis Cardinals to get it done but with the leadership of first year manager, John Farrell and 1B/DH David Ortiz, they claim their third title in the past 10 years.
It was all bad just a year ago… Terry Francona, the manager that helped break the “curse” of the Boston Red Sox, was let go in the off-season after a year of “unknowingly” letting his players drink beer and eat fried chicken in the clubhouse. Chicken and beer carried the headlines but in truth, the season wasn’t up to the expectations of the front office or fans. Fans still held on to the “Tito” Francona that led them to two World Series titles, putting an end to the well documented “curse” that was mentioned after every Red Sox season until the hump was jumped.
Bobby Valentine, whose last gig was a managerial position in Japan where he had success, was hired as the replacement to the fan favorite, Francona. The former ESPN analyst & New York Mets manager stepped into a position that started bad and would only get worse. Baseball, unlike other sports, has its own unwritten rules. Quite frankly, if the team isn’t behind you, they won’t play for you. Only the players can answer what happened during the one year, unexplainable, hysterical Bobby Valentine tenure. In a salary dump from the front office to a season that couldn’t find an upside, Josh Beckett, Adrian Gonzalez and Carl Crawford were traded to the Dodgers. The 100th anniversary of the famous Fenway Park ended with a 69-93 record and a season to forget.
This past off-season brought back minor hope with the hiring of former pitching coach of the Red Sox, John Farrell. Farrell was brought along in 2007 with ties to Terry Francona, which would be the year of the second World Series victory under the Francona era. Farrell left but stayed in the same division as he became the Toronto Blue Jays manager. After a season of keeping a group of players fighting hard through injuries, in what would be one of the rare instances, Farrell interviewed with the Sox and soon after, was traded for a player to become the leader of a club in which he was familiar with and respected its players.
The American League East can be described as the toughest division in baseball year after year. The New York Yankees and Boston Red Sox stand on top in the headlines but there’s also the Tampa Bay Rays, the resurgence of the Baltimore Orioles and aforementioned Blue Jays. Every team is competitive and for baseball fans, it makes for a long 162 game roller coaster ride of a season.
April 15th, 2013 was a day you would like to forget in the city of Boston but that day will always be remembered like September 11th, 2001 to all Americans. April 15th was the day of the Boston Bombings during the Boston Marathon. Once a horrific event occurs, anger sets in & the questions of why us or simply why? One thing that will always ring true after a tragedy is people no longer take sports for granted. The beauty of sports is to be able to take your mind off the daily troubles and enjoy an event while you’re not attached to what went wrong for that couple of hours. The bond and strength of players to give their all that have become adopted sons to a city most have never lived in before playing for that team.
David Ortiz has been a leader for the Boston Red Sox for years but this year, he was a leader for the city.
David Ortiz wins the MVP and the Boston Red Sox win the World Series not only for themselves but for the city of Boston.
#BostonStrong was more than words and this team is a split image of the fans and the city itself. The Red Sox overcame their toughest moments with the city on its back and they helped each other to this point tonight.
2013 World Series Champions
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