My view for Game 1 of ALDS and Game 2 of ALCS. Photo by Patrick Conlon
I am fortunate enough to have access to playoff tickets due to a relative who is employed by the Boston Red Sox. I am not at the top of the pecking order when it comes to who goes when, but other’s travel plans allowed me to be in attendance for Game 1 of the ALDS, so I left that game frustrated by the Sox’ 1-0 loss to the Tigers.
I knew I would have Game 2 tickets when they made it to the ALCS, so I hoped to experience an exciting Red Sox victory like my in-laws had in Game 1. My excitement turned to horror and dismay as I watched with my wife Thursday night when the 7th inning resembled a little league game for one horrendous play. It was decided among family members earlier in the game that I would not be allowed to come back to Fenway if the Sox’ futility continued at the plate with me in attendance. After that 7th inning it was obvious to us all that I would not be witnessing another 2013 World Series game firsthand, and that is just how it has to be!
Of course, for that to matter the Red Sox need to win at least one game in St. Louis over this weekend. We are rooting for an ace performance from Jake Peavy in Game 3 tonight, in addition to some Red Sox bats waking up. Outside of David Ortiz and Dustin Pedroia, the rest of the Red Sox lineup has looked quite inept since the 2nd inning of Game 1 of this ALCS.
The first two games of this World Series have not been determined by dominant pitching or clutch hitting late in the games. Instead, the Red Sox capitalized on shoddy St Louis defense scoring 5 runs in the 1st two innings on their way to victory in Game 1, and in their Game 2 win, the Cardinals scored 3 runs on 2 hits, 2 walks, and 2 Red Sox errors in the 7th inning.
These two teams are very evenly matched, so it’s very easy to say that the team that makes the fewest mistakes will prevail in each game. However, that becomes even more critical as this Series moves to St Louis and the loss of the DH means the loss of Mike Napoli from the Red Sox starting lineup. The Red Sox will need to capitalize on any Cardinals miscues, and in turn not return to the Little League form of parts of Game 2.
So, I will watch Game 3 tonight in my familiar fashion in my living room – on the couch for most of the game with electronics within reach to keep tabs on game notes, and the later innings I will be standing with my hands above my head pushing against the exposed beam in our country styled home. This is the fashion I watched the 2004 & 2007 World Series games, and being a ball player my entire life, I know it is the way that I need to watch the rest of this World Series (for Red Sox Nation’s sake)!