The Boston Red Sox have been a monster since the turn of the century.
After 85 years of suffering, the team broke its infamous World Series drought in 2004.
And since then, the organization has not slowed down.
Boston captured its second 21st century title in 2007, the third in 2013 and the fourth in 2018.
This season, the Red Sox are looking for another.
And if they want that to happen, they will have to start by eliminating the New York Yankees in tonight’s American League Wild Card Game.
The Red Sox weren’t supposed to compete in 2021, but here they are
Boston was not a popular pick to make the playoffs before the 2021 season began.
In fact, most bookies expected the team to finish around .500.
Perhaps the Red Sox took it personally, because the club exceeded all expectations in the regular season.
Sure, it was tough at times, and sure, Boston barely got a wild-card offer.
But all things considered, a 92-70 season is very impressive for a team that wasn’t supposed to compete.
Now that the Red Sox are in the postseason, they are playing with the house money.
They are a dangerous club to face in the playoffs.
Will Boston escape the wild card game?
Before the Red Sox can start thinking about another World Series title, they will have to get out of the AL Wild Card Game.
That is no small task.
The Red Sox have the benefit of hosting the Yankees in tonight’s life and death matchup, but New York has a couple of key factors going for it.
One, the Yankees have ace Gerrit Cole on the mound.
Boston is also rolling with his ace, in the form of Nathan Eovaldi, but the Yankees probably have the upper hand in the pitcher showdown.
Two, Boston will be without JD Martinez in tonight’s game.
JD Martinez is not on the wild card list as @jonmorosi reported. Big blow for Boston.
– Jon Heyman (@JonHeyman) October 5, 2021
The slugger is dealing with an ankle injury and will not be available.
It will take an inspired effort on the part of the Red Sox to defeat New York, but anything can happen in a game.
This is the first time Boston has played in the single elimination wild card game.
Since the single elimination wild card game format was introduced in 2012, the Red Sox have been able to avoid it.
They have either won the AL East or missed the playoffs altogether every year since 2012.
But starting in 2021, that trend ended.
In a few hours, Boston will finally find itself in the single elimination game.
The Wild Card Game isn’t the most desirable venue for any club, but to state the obvious, it’s infinitely better than missing the playoffs.
All you can ask for is one shot, and that’s what the Red Sox gave themselves by winning a wild-card offer.
Nerves are sure to be very high in Boston as the game nears the first pitch, because this is a very unfamiliar sentiment to Red Sox fans.
I’m so nervous about the Yanks vs Red Sox game tonight.
There’s nothing crazier than this … If you don’t watch a lot of baseball, I still HIGHLY recommend watching tonight’s game.
– zmead (@zmead) October 5, 2021
Sure, the team has been involved in countless life-and-death playoff games over the years, but never on the first day of the postseason.
Time will tell how the night will unfold.
Will Boston live to see another day?