I was only twelve when the Red Sox came from behind to overcome a three-game deficit and beat the Yankees in the ALCS. Part of me wishes I’d been older so I could’ve stayed up late to watch every inning and really taken it all in. But I know that one of the reasons I look back on 2004 with such fondness and feel so much magic in that season is because I was so young.
Lucky for me, Friday night’s Sox-Yankees series opener at Fenway felt a lot like 2004. The Sox started off with a commanding lead, blew it, and then came from behind (again) to win it 9-6. It was the Sox’s 31st come-from-behind victory of the season, making it 44.28% of their wins so far.
After Drew Pomeranz left the game in the 4th with back spasms, the game took a sharp turn for the worse, as the Yankees walloped Matt Barnes, Joe Kelly, and Heath Hembree, taking a 6-3 lead with four runs in the 7th. But the Boston fans who ignored the warning of thunderstorms were rewarded in the bottom of the 7th, when the Red Sox pretended there was still a curse to be broken, and responded to the Yankee lead with a resounding “GTFO” and four runs of their own. JBJ capped it off with a 2 RBI-single in the 8th, and Kimbrel came out in the 9th to hand the Yankees their asses and send them off to sleep, dreaming of the days when we were the pathetic, ringless-since-1918 weaklings of yesteryear.
The word that keeps getting batted around (pun not intended) with this team is resilient. This team is full of guys who genuinely like each other and enjoy playing the game together, and they really vibe off each other. And I think those things are factors in their resilience and vice versa. The Sox keep coming back, overcoming deficits, and cementing their wins late in the game or in extra innings. And we all love a comeback, we love an underdog, and we love beating the Yankees. It all feels so good, so good, so good (sorry).
– Rafael Devers had his 7th homer of the season (which for him is 19 games), a 2-run homer in the 2nd
– Devers joins Babe Ruth and Ted Williams as the only three Red Sox in franchise history to homer in back-to-back games when they were younger than 21
– Christan Vazquez went 3 for 3 with two singles, homering in the 5th and scoring on Mookie Betts’ sacrifice fly in the 7th
– Benintendi had an RBI and run scored in the 7th, fueling hope that he’ll repeat last weekend’s epic rout of the Yankees
– Craig “Always Be Closing” Kimbrel picked up his 29th save of the season
– The Red Sox re-extended their lead over the Yankees to five games
Photos courtesy of Red Sox