A Promising Run for the Red Sox Comes to a Screeching Halt

As I sit here and write this article, it hurts to think how close this team came to a World Series. It hurts seeing how cold the bats went at the worst possible time. What may hurt the most though, is seeing firsthand the momentum shift back to a powerhouse offense in Houston.

It was not easy to watch those last three games, but we did. With that being said, I also think about how proud I am of this team ending up where they did in the ALCS. A team who was projected to finish with 80 or fewer wins and no chance at the playoffs, coming off a year where they finished fourth to last in the overall standings.

A Year that was so Improbable, the Impossible almost Happened.

It had been a roller coaster of a second-half that left the Red Sox with a lot of questions as to if they would even make the playoffs after being in first for almost all of the first half.

The team just kept dancing on their own.

Well, here we are now, as the great Vin Scully said “In a year that has been so improbable, the impossible has happened.”

So Close to a Team of Destiny

At the beginning of the season fans (myself included) had no idea what to think of this team. Most sports outlets had them sitting at 80 wins and being a roughly 500 team. That certainly was not the case as they cruised through the first half of the season.

After a rough August and a subpar September, the team found themselves in a predicament. Swept by their rivals New York Yankees, the team faced a mountain of questions as they attempted to climb back into the race. It came down to the last day, and some magic as the team clawed back from a 5-0 deficit to beat the Nationals and clinch the first Wild Card.

From there, they got to meet the Yankees again for a one-game showdown for a chance to play the Rays in the ALDS. Gerrit Cole vs. Nathan Eovaldi, the Red Sox would come out victorious.

Then, the team headed south for Tropicana Field for a best of 5 against divisional rival Tampa Bay Rays. Where after losing the first game, plowed through a 100 win “popcorn-eating” team. From that point on, the team Just Kept Dancing on their Own.

Playing With House Money

So, the Red Sox overcame both division rivals to advance to the ALCS to face the Houston Astros. At this point, the team was playing straight up with house money from here on out. Game 1 was a struggle as the bullpen blew a 2 run lead and lost. After that, well, an offensive explosion in Game 2 saw the team hit two Grand Slams.

For Game 3, it was back to an electric Fenway. The offense lit up the night once again to the tune of multiple homers and another grand slam. A dominant outing by E-Rod ended with him doing the signature Correa “point to watch” celebration. It was after Game 3 when everything came crashing down on the Boston Red Sox.

A Forgettable Ending

From Game 4 on was forgettable, to say the least.  A Houston pitching staff that had been struggling completely turned it around after the Red Sox Bats went ice cold during Game 4 and any momentum that the team had, shifted right back in favor of Houston.

In fact, the Red Sox were outscored 16-1 in the final two games. since the “so-called” controversial ending to Game 4. It was then and there, that the veteran-laden Houston Astros turned the whole series on its head winning the final three games to clinch a spot in the 2021 Fall Classic.

A Final Farewell to the 2021 Red Sox.

It, by all means, was not the ending any of us fans were looking for. You see your team make it to Game 6 of the ALCS and you can just see the promised land ahead, this was just not that year. Fans saw that after the team lost in a crucial Game 4, of course, we still had hoped they could turn it around but the bats just could not get going again.

It is never easy to accept a loss like this, I am still in shock and frustrated as I write this. The thing we need to remember though is, this team is still so young, they showed a lot of promise this season, and that they are ahead of schedule. The season could allow Bloom to dive into the big-name Free Agency market much sooner than anticipated.

The Red Sox Will be Back…

So, get some rest, take a mental break from Red Sox baseball, enjoy your time off and cheer for the other Boston Sports teams, because I have a feeling 2022 is going to be a hell of a season for the Boston Red Sox.

Photo Courtesy: Carmen Mandato/Getty Images

-Jeff Hoak (@jeffhoak1)

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