Last night I was thinking it. You were thinking it. We were all thinking it.
Then in a single stroke, you sent a bomb into the Sox bullpen, Torii Hunter’s legs went vertical and the entire Boston nation was on its feet. It was proof of why you watch until the end. Always.
Because up until that blast, I had spent the past two hours cursing Joe Buck, wondering how that man has been allowed to ruin the postseason experience of so many people for so long. I spent the rest of the time trying to introduce my husband D to the various Sox players as they came to the plate and inevitably disappointed. He was not impressed.
So I focused on the pitching instead. I told D how Buccholz used to have this tendency to melt down on the mound. That he can be erratic. Pitch like Cy Young one inning, and then something spooks him and he completely forfeits his confidence and the strike zone. Last night that kind of happened. For five innings he was the Buccholz of late. Fierce. Competitive. And a little dirty. And then the sixth came and he was bleeding out on the mound chewing his fingernails. It was horrible.
My mom texted she couldn’t watch anymore. It was just too sad. Then D picked up a book. I wondered whether or not it would be best to just wave a white flag, pack the gear and head to Detroit hoping the hitless streak wouldn’t follow us. But there are no white flags in baseball, just limping to the dugout. I made D change seats with me for the final three innings. Because you never know what could make a difference.
Let me be clear. I was not convinced there would be a comeback. I knew it was possible. Unlikely. But possible. And if there’s anyone capable of the improbable it’s the boobs with the beards. However, I continued watching out of principle alone, reasoning if I am going to celebrate when you win, I have to support you when you lose. Or at least, I have to show you I care enough to curse you when you’re down. You know how it is Papi.
No one has helped us dig our way out of a bigger hole. No one does clutch like you. One swing and it was like 2004 all over again. A clean slate. And another day to try.