In tones that can only be described as "exasperated," Dante asked, "Am I in the twilight zone?" With the Red Sox up 5-2 in the 8th, manager Terry Francona decided to leave Hideki Okajima in to start his third inning of work. Hmm... 5-2, 8th inning, pitcher being left in for too long in Game 7 of an ALCS... where have we seen this before?
Not this time, though. These Red Sox, unlike past kin, are unburdened by the pressure that comes from not winning a World Series in entire generations of fans' lifetimes. The score may not be indicative of how close the game was (did I not say the Red Sox would tack on a few runs late? Granted, I didn't expect so many...), but make no mistake, the Sox won definitively, and amid the dust clouds they kicked up a heartbroken city is left wondering, "Are we cursed?"
No, cursed isn't quite the right word, but the situation is unfortunate, certainly. (Imagine being Kenny Lofton, championship-less, having seen his team lose series 3-2, 4-3, 4-3 and 4-3 after being ahead 2-0 (with the Indians), 3-1 (Cubs), 3-0 (Yankees) and 3-1 (Indians again).) If it's any consolation -- and it isn't, I know -- a very deserving team won in one of the better Championship Series in recent memory.
Not much more to say at the moment, so I'll just leave off with this comment from "Yagur," which appears in the above link:
I'm also a Red Sox fan, and registered for this site just to say this to y'all:
Your city fielded a great team this year, and you supported them with heart and soul. Boston fans were taken aback by the spirit and noise and clamor we saw at the Jake, and wondered -- well, I wondered -- not only if we wouldn't be able to beat this team, but whether or not we deserved to. The 2007 Indians were the kind of team I love to root for -- young, over-performing, inventive, a team that found a dozen ways to beat you other than the dozen than you expected. Plus: Trot Nixon! For a while there, in comparison, our guys looked like a bunch of overpaid mercenaries who were getting distracted thinking about spending the winter in their mansions, and our fans seemed puzzled and dispirited by how your guys were just outclassing us between the lines...