The Yankees let the Red Sox play a part in their ALCS downfall
It was mid-July, and the New York Yankees were rolling. They were on pace to break the 2001 Seattle Mariners’ single-season win record, and seemed destined to represent the American League in the World Series – something they haven’t done since 2009. That path then imploded in the second half of the season, as the team went 35-35 after the All-Star break, lost homefield advantage in the playoffs, then was swept in the ALCS by the Houston Astros.
Those on that side of the rivalry may take issue with Boston fans taking a victory lap after the Yankees’ 6-5 loss last night. After all, their team got much further than ours did. Yes, the Red Sox didn’t even sniff the playoffs this year. Yet despite the Sox finishing six games under .500, the Yankees were still kind enough to allow them to play a part in their ALCS demise.
As we all know, the Red Sox are the only team in MLB history to erase a 3-0 series deficit, which they did in 2004 when they came back to beat the Yankees on their way to their first World Series title in 86 years. It was one of, if not the most embarrassing moment for a franchise that considers itself the standard in North American team sports.
Given the nature of the comeback, that run that now often gets brought up whenever a team – in any sport – finds itself in a 3-0 hole. You might think the Yankees themselves would be the exception to that rule. Well, apparently not.
Aaron Boone said that Chad Bohling, the #Yankees’ mental skills coach, was sending around highlight videos of the 2004 Red Sox this morning. Eduardo Perez also FaceTimed David Ortiz into Boone’s office pregame.
Prior to Game 4 in New York on Sunday night, Aaron Boone told reporters that the Yankees’ mental skills coach Chad Bohling was sending around highlight videos of the 2004 Red Sox to the team leading up to the game. Yes, really.
“We watched that video today,” Yankees manager Aaron Boone said Sunday morning, via MLB.com. “We sent it out to all our coaches and are getting it out to all of our players. I think [the message is] just the belief that they had. They had confidence; you see Millar, ‘Don’t let us win one.’ Look, we still have time. We’re obviously now as far up against it as you can be and not in a great spot, but you can’t get ahead of yourselves, either.”
As if that wasn’t enough, ESPN’s Eduardo Perez tried to set up a facetime between Boone and perhaps the biggest hero of that 2004 series, Red Sox legend David Ortiz. Boone declined to share what Ortiz told him, per ESPN.
During the regular season, there wasn’t much for Red Sox fans to smile and laugh about. On Sunday on social media though, they (as well as fans of other teams) got their fill before and after the game, reacting to the idea of the Yankees watching the Yankees’ biggest downfall as a method of inspiration.
Using your rival’s team comeback victory against YOU as inspiration and still getting swept >>>>>>>> https://t.co/flZrcTkkv1
Here's David Ortiz beating the Yankees. Here's Derek Lowe beating the Yankees. Here's Curt Schilling on one ankle beating the Yankees. Here's Mark friggin Bellhorn beating the Yankees. Anyway, hope this helps. https://t.co/mTSbParmY0
Well, at least Aaron Judge – sorry, pending free agent Aaron Judge – hit the seventh-most single season home runs in Major League history! Right?
With the Yankees eliminated, it will be the Houston Astros and the Philadelphia Phillies in the World Series. The Phillies also punched their ticket on Sunday, with a dramatic Game 5 win over the San Diego Padres in the NLCS. That series begins Friday night.
For Red Sox fans looking for a connection to the series, former Red Sox president of baseball operations Dave Dombrowski is now running the show in Philly, and former Red Sox outfielder Kyle Schwarber has played a key role. Schwarber also brought Dancing On My Own, the rally song for the Red Sox’ 2021 postseason run, with him to Philly.
Alex Barth is a writer and digital producer for 985TheSportsHub.com. Any opinions expressed do not necessarily reflect those of 98.5 The Sports Hub, Beasley Media Group, or any subsidiaries. Thoughts? Comments? Questions? Looking for a podcast guest? Let him know on Twitter @RealAlexBarthor via email at abarth@985TheSportsHub.com.