Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Bob Lobel: The Two Moments that Built These Sox

By Bob Lobel  @boblobel

Your guess is as good as mine. Maybe better…

I don’t have a clue how this is all going to play out for the Red Sox. Why should I sit down at the computer and pound out a column of guess work? When you live in a sports universe occupied by the Boston Red Sox, you have to be prepared for anything and everything. 

You have to be party ready. You have to be disappointment proofed. You have to be a lot of things that will be a part of the story of your life and the lives of those around you. How those things play out or manifest themselves are out there waiting to happen. 

It's why the old phrase of “that's why they don’t mail it in” exists. We do have plenty of experience in these matters. It will take every ounce of that experience to come away from this next month in some kind of stable condition emotionally. I can tell you how we got here. The seeds of this team began to grow ever so slightly when Theo left for Chicago (How is that working out?).

That was kind of the start of finding the building blocks. Ben was in… Unfortunately so was Bobby.  Ben became Yoda and Bobby was the Dark Side.
The Force was with Ben but it just took a while. When they pulled the "Artful Dodger Deal" last summer, the sun began to come out from behind the clouds. Jedi warriors began to assemble and train.  This new group of basically unknown quantities were unleashed with no expectations except simple improvement over last year.  

The other thing that I can tell you for certain is that on April 20th, a Saturday in the sun at Fenway Park, the magic began to take form. It was the day after the Friday night manhunt in Watertown that netted bomber number two from the bottom of a boat. It was the day that Neil Diamond flew to Boston to help celebrate with the first available public gathering after the week of Marathon madness. The first open air church service was being held right there on Lansdowne street on April 20th.

For the record, the Kansas City Royals we leading the Red Sox when Neil Diamond took a full six plus minutes to do his thing. The crowd did respond in an amazing display of good will. That didn’t seal the deal however, that came in the bottom of the 8th after Sweet Caroline, when Daniel Nava hit a three-run homer to right field to log one of the amazing come from behind wins these guys have put on the board. 

This wasn't just another come from behind win. Because of the day, because of the previous week and the previous night, because of so many of these things coming together, a baseball team was born.  That, my friends, was the start of something big.

Now, I will stand by those two moments. 

The Dodger Deal first created opportunity, and the Neil/Nava eighth inning gave life to that opportunity. It may be a little simplified but that’s how we got to this week. 

Sorry, no predictions. No clue as to what happens next. The past tells us how we got here, not what is about to happen.  However, the only irresponsible thing I will say is that, why go through all that energy seemingly produced with divine intervention to have it end badly. 

Well,  it won't.


franny gallagher said...

Nice column, Bob.
The exorcism of Booby V provided the catalyst, around the league too, for the karma surrounding ghe Sox this year. Just look at the Yankees. El o el...

Anonymous said...

The Daniel Nava homer was one of the most electric moments I've ever seen in 45+ years of watching Boston sports.

The unloading of Crawford, Beckett, Gonzalez, and Punto will be talked about in awe and reverence 100 years from now.