You Have Become What I Already Am

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September 13, 2012 by NowhereButPop

By Andrew Doscas

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Disclaimer: When it comes to sports, Andrew Doscas is completely and unapologetically biased……Hey if Bill Simmons can do it, why the hell can’t I?[1]

With that being said, know that this is an attempt by a Yankee fan to understand and analyze the rise and fall of the Boston Red Sox over the past ten years.  Also, let me say, I don’t understand how a team can always seem to come back from a playoff series with their back against the wall.  The Red Sox teams of the past ten years have been cockroaches…….you just can’t kill them; they keep coming back.  In the 2003 ALDS, they’re down 0-2 against the A’s then come back to win the next three; 2004 we all know what happened; 2007 against the Indians down 1-3, they somehow come back and just gangbang the Indians over the next three games.  Then in 2008 down 1-3 again (this time against the Rays), they bring the series to seven games; even though they lose, it still amazes and frustrates me at how resilient they’ve been.  However, over the past few years the Red Sox have become the embodiment of a star-studded team that seems to collapse and fail to come through in a clutch; in short, they’ve become the Yankees.

I love the Yankees; you know this, but since 2001 I don’t ever have much faith that they’ll come through whenever needed (look no further than Alex Rodriguez).  The Red Sox however, seemed to do the opposite.  From 2003-2008 they always seemed like they could come back, and that no lead was safe from them no matter what inning of the game it was or what the score was.  During those five years, as a Yankee fan, the feeling was that just as we were about to secure victory some David Ortiz, or some no name (Kevin Millar, Bill Mueller, Trot Nixon, etc….) would come up to bat and have the game winning hit and in short fuck my shit up for the rest of the day.

For a time, they were the anti-Yankees, instead of having A-Rod, Sheffield, Giambi, Mussina, Randy Johnson, and Roger Clemens, the Red Sox boasted such keepers as Bronson Arroyo, Jason Varitek[2], Mark Bellhorn, and Coco Crisp to name a few.  They were the self proclaimed idiots, and you know what, for a time it worked.  That’s how they managed to garner sympathy for themselves all the while creating venomous feelings towards the Yankees.  They made themselves seem like the new cool because they weren’t cool; they knew that they weren’t the Yankees and acted like it.  That’s why every kid who tried to rebel in middle school became a Red Sox fan for about 2 ½ year.  It was the uncool and different thing to do.

The worst and I mean absolute worst thing that the Red Sox could have done was win the World Series.  They lost what they had going for them; they ended their drought and stopped being the Red Sox and became just like every other team out there.  The only problem though is that Boston is a big market city, not only that, but a city that has to compete with New York.  As a result, you can’t be a one and done team, you now have to contend and prove that you can piss with the big boys.  Especially after not having won a championship in 86 years, you can’t go back to being a non-contender because a fan base starving for a championship has now had their appetites whetted, and once that hunger, that addiction to winning grips there is absolutely no letting go; you can’t go back to watching that team lose and be the lovable losers.

This is what it’s like to be a Yankee fan growing up over the past 20 years.  There is absolutely no reason on God’s green Earth why the Yankees should not win the World Series every year; with the team that we have we start to look at victory as the rule, the expectation, and not as the exception or as something good that happened.  Whether we take victory for granted or just treat it so preciously I’ll never know.  And now because of the teams that John Henry has put on the field year in and year out coupled with two relatively recent championships, Boston fans have that same hunger now, and let me tell you it sucks.  And that’s why they’ve become the Yankees, because they have the expectation that they should win along with the team to back such a belief.

Remember that show Heroes, the one that started off really promising but only lasted four seasons because every season storyline and episode was exactly the same?  Well, there was one episode where the main character Peter, someone who can mimic the superpowers of another, forces the show’s villain, Sylar, to teach him how to use his power.  Now, Sylar posses the power to intuitively understand how things work; this comes at a price though as it has created an insatiable hunger to kill and incorporate the powers of his victims into himself.  While Peter is demanding that Sylar show him how he works, Sylar is trying to tell Peter that he doesn’t want this for himself, as the hunger will drive him insane.  In case you’re wondering where I’m going with his analogy, us Yankee fans are Sylar, we have the hunger to win, and in trying to understand and defeat us the Red Sox and their fans have become Peter.  They’ve become someone so willing to defeat their enemy that they are willing to become them.

Over the past ten years, let’s look at who the Red Sox have signed, shall we?

  • 2003, they sign David Ortiz, someone who had a relatively unknown career in Minnesota, yet goes on to become the bane of all Yankee fans.[3]
  • Prior to the 2004 season they sign Curt Schilling,
  • Two years later, to further augment their rotation ship a bunch of promising prospect to the Marlins for Josh Beckett, who weirdly enough only pitches well on odd numbered years as you can see here (I suspect his complete game shutout in game 6 against the Yankees in 2003 had something to do with this deal).
  •  In 2006 to spite the Yankees for signing Kei Igawa, the Red Sox sign Daisuke Matsuzaka
  • Prior to the 2010 season, the Red Sox signed Adrian Beltre and then proceed to sign John Lackey (why I don’t know, maybe because they figured they needed their own A.J. Burnett?)
  • The following year they sign Carl Crawford for too much money and too many years and confine him to left field in Fenway Park.  They also proceed to kidnap Adrian Gonzalez from San Diego.
  • Although he has no purpose being on any team, I’m pretty sure that the only reason why the Red Sox signed Vicente Padilla was just to throw at Mark Teixeira for spurning them four years ago.

Odd, that for a team that despises the Yankees, they seem to have made some remarkably “Yankee” deals; either break the bank for a ton of stars, or trade away the farm for someone you have no need for.  I think that’s why they’ve lost their sense of clutch and always coming through, just like the Yankees, the Red Sox have the skill, but have failed to instill in their fan base the faith that they can overcome any obstacle.  The team has become to convoluted with stars that they lost their heart.  For Boston fans, look back over the past four years.  A sweep by the Angels in 2009, a team you guys have owned, failure to make the playoffs in 2010, a terrible collapse in 2011 that frankly, with a team like that should never happen.  And now, in 2012 with the recent fire sale over the past summer, you’d think the Red Sox were the Marlins after winning a world series.  I have no problem with a team trying to be the Yankees, because in all honesty every fan of any wants to say that their team has won 27 championships and boasts some of the most iconic players ever.  But in their never ending quest to best the Yankees, the Red Sox have become the Yankees, and worst of all they did so at the price of their soul.


[1] Because you’re nowhere nearly as established as he is.

[2] Who’s not nearly as good as people give him credit for…..look up his stats.

[3] Also, why does everyone seem to forget that he tested positive for steroids back in 2003.  He proclaims that his vitamin and supplement intake might have been tainted at the time, but when asked which vitamins and supplements he was taking, claimed not to know.

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