With the American League won, the Boston Red Sox are in position to win the World Series for the fourth time since 2004. As anyone who grew up hearing the stories that make up the Boston myth, the story of the Red Sox extends much further back.
At the beginning of the American League in 1900, the Red Sox were the dominant team in the new league, winning the first ever World Series in 1903 and then taking four pennants in six years between 1912 and 1918. At the start, it has been said, they were the New York Yankees, the team with 27 pennants in its illustrious history.
This part of Red Sox lore is relevant today in 2018. This year’s team broke the franchise record for wins in a season set in 1912. Then, the Sox dominated the league with 105 wins; now, 106 years later, they dominated with 108.
This team — and this era of the franchise —calls back to the dominance it once had and surpasses in some cases the excellence fans from the later 20th century had only heard about. They’ve won the AL East, widely considered the best division in baseball, the past three years. Since their last pennant in 2013, they’ve experienced disappointment come October, but the winning ways of this team and its history provide confidence for a successful World Series.
The Sox have won every pennant they’ve played for since 2004. Since shedding the curse, they have converted every time they’ve gotten to the big stage. There’s no reason to think they are incapable of doing it now, after beating the best two teams (besides themselves) in baseball in the 100-win Yankees and 103-win Houston Astros and having home field advantage at the most unique stadium in baseball. This October, the Sox fought back every time it seemed like they were trending down.
After falling in Game 2 to the Yankees and only narrowly winning Game 1, they responded with an explosive 16 – 1 Game 3 with every starter recording a hit, and didn’t let off the gas a night later when they clinched the ALDS.
Playing the reigning World Series champions and the team that eliminated them last October, things got shaky when they dropped the first game to the Astros at home. Bouncing right back, the Sox showed their grit and didn’t lose another game, sealing the ALCS in five games.
Successfully knocking out two very good teams already this postseason, the Red Sox will be able to handle the 92-win Los Angeles Dodgers this World Series. They’ve already shown they can hit great pitchers like Astros ace Justin Verlander. Now, in the bitter cold of a fall in Boston, they will have to hit another great pitcher, Clayton Kershaw, who has never faced the Red Sox.
Mirroring this season their historical greatness of the past, the Red Sox hope to beat the Dodgers in their first matchup in 102 years. Much has changed since 1916. The Dodgers aren’t in New York and the Red Sox don’t have Babe Ruth. The Sox still play at Fenway, but this time they have Mookie Betts.