SalemNews.com, Salem, MA

Opinion

October 24, 2013

Our view: The improbable dream

The World Series is in full swing, and none of us would have imagined a year ago that the Red Sox would be the odds-on favorite to win the trophy.

This band of bearded Bostonians has blasted its way to the World Series with an impressive number of walk-off home runs, playoff grand slams, smart moves on the roster and yeoman work through the dog days of the summer — the time of year when many teams start to fade and crash.

Boston sports fans are once again living the kind of sports fantasy story that for most sports towns is only seen in a storybook movie. We celebrated this same improbable story line with the 2001 New England Patriots and again in 2004 with the historic Red Sox “Idiots” who broke the curse of the Bambino. The same formula exists this year, as if by design.

A story like this year’s Sox can only be born from the ashes of disaster.

Let’s turn the clock back to those ashes of one year ago. Clubhouse bickering, management dysfunction and bad chemistry landed the team in last place. It was the bookend to an embarrassing collapse in September 2011, when the Sox spun out of control amid clubhouse binges on fried chicken, beer and childish behavior. Both collapses cost the Sox managers — first Terry Francona and then Bobby Valentine — their jobs.

This year was supposed to be the start of a recovery, under a new coach with many new players. It was supposed to be the “rebuilding year” that would see the Sox emerge from the dark basement and perhaps peep a bit at the light. But sports chemistry can be a strange thing — as bad as it can be, it can also coalesce into a perfect solution. And that is what this year’s Sox became.

Text Only | Photo Reprints
Opinion

AP Video
Captain of Sunken SKorean Ferry Arrested Raw: Fire Destroys 3 N.J. Beachfront Homes Raw: Pope Presides Over Good Friday Mass Raw: Space X Launches to Space Station Superheroes Descend on Capitol Mall Man Charged in Kansas City Highway Shootings Obama Awards Navy Football Trophy Anti-semitic Leaflets Posted in Eastern Ukraine Raw: Magnitude-7.2 Earthquake Shakes Mexico City Ceremony at MIT Remembers One of Boston's Finest Raw: Students Hurt in Colo. School Bus Crash Raw: Church Tries for Record With Chalk Jesus Raw: Faithful Celebrate Good Friday Worldwide Deadly Avalanche Sweeps Slopes of Mount Everest Police Arrest Suspect in Highway Shootings Drought Concerns May Hurt Lake Tourism Vermont Goat Meat Gives Refugees Taste of Home Calif. Investigators Re-construct Fatal Bus Cras Mayor Rob Ford Launches Re-election Campaign Appellate Court Hears Okla. Gay Marriage Case
Comments Tracker
Roll Call
Helium debate
Helium