The Boston Red Sox are the champions of the baseball world once again. On October 28, the Red Sox claimed their fourth title this century by beating the Los Angeles Dodgers four games to one. It was exciting and emotional for the team as they battled hard all year. They beat two 100+ win teams (New York Yankees and Houston Astros) in the playoffs, and will be known as one of the best teams of all time.
This World Series victory changed the lives and legacies of many players, including utility man Steve Pearce and starting pitcher David Price.
Pearce grew up a huge Red Sox fan, and his dream was always to play for the Sox. He was a journeyman for most of his career, playing for seven teams since 2007, including every team that plays in the AL East.
But this past June, Pearce’s dream came true. He was traded to the Boston Red Sox in an under-the-radar move made by Sox General Manager Dave Dombrowski.
Pearce was brought into the Red Sox organization for his success against lefty pitchers, but he did much more for the Sox in the World Series than just put the ball in play.
Pearce batted .302 against lefties with three home runs and 12 RBIs, but the game where he really came out of his shell was against the Yankees in early August. Pearce hit three home runs in a rout of the Yanks. This series really separated the Sox from the Yanks, and the rest of the MLB, at an early part of the season.
Come World Series time, Pearce came up clutch again. In Game 4, he stepped up to the plate in the 8th inning against dominant Dodger closer Kenley Jansen, delivering a solo home run to tie the game up at four. And he was not done there. In the 9th, he gave the Sox some insurance runs with a bases-clearing double to put away any chance of the Dodgers coming back.
In Game 5, Pearce opened up scoring with a two-run homer off of one of the best pitchers in baseball, Dodgers starter Clayton Kershaw.
Later, in the 8th inning, he followed up his homer off Kershaw with a solo homer to all but close out the World Series.
As a result, Pearce was awarded World Series MVP,something that many fans would not have pictured at the beginning of the season.
“You never know where the game will take you,” Pearce said to reporters after Game 5. “And I’ve gone through a lot in my life or in my career to be here, and I couldn’t be more thankful.”
It was a long journey to get to where he is today, but Pearce deserves every part of his first World Series ring.
Another player who excelled was Price. Unlike Pearce, Price was expected to per- form in the postseason during each stage of his career. He’s the $217 million man for the Sox, after all. Somehow, though, Price had never won a postseason game going into the 2018 postseason with the Red Sox.
This postseason, he finally erased his demons and quieted the doubters around the league.
He started dominating the postseason against the Astros in the ALCS, going six innings with three hits, no runs and nine strikeouts in a 4-1 win.
In the World Series, Price delivered two gutsy performances. He gave the Red Sox a win in Game 2, allowing three hits and recording five strikeouts.
He then asked skipper Alex Cora for the ball in Game 5 to go out and win the World Series, and he pitched the best game of his life. He went seven innings strong, allowing just three hits and five strikeouts.
Price showed tons of emotion after getting big outs, and proved to the Red Sox nation that he can bring home a champion- ship once and for all.
He was very emotional after the final out. When asked what it means to be a great teammate, Price was at a loss for words.
“It means a lot,” Price told a reporter after Game 5. “It’s the relationships you make while you play this game. That’s what makes this game so special.”
Price delivered for his teammates who knew how much he wanted to win, and nobody can question Price’s ability now.
Price has had many bouts with the Boston media in the past, but he has proved them wrong with his performance.
“I hold all the cards now,” Price said to the media in his press conference after the World Series celebrations.
Well, he certainly does. After winning the 2018 World Series, Price and the Sox are bringing home the Commissioner’s Trophy to Boston for the fourth time in the past 14 years.
Contact Cam Cobey at [email protected]