Sure the Sox have been down 3-1 before. Sure they have pulled out that "magic" to rally past the likes of the Yankees and the Indians to get to the big dance...and I'm in no way waiving the white flag, but there appears to be some sincere differences in both the 2008 Red Sox and the clubs of the past.
First of all, the level of turnover from 2004 to 2008 is downright amazing, comparing these two teams would be looking at apples and oranges. But in 2007, the Red Sox were a different team, one that had an all-world ace in Josh Beckett, a playoff tested and resourceful Curt Schilling, some left fielder from Washington Heights who was pretty good, a healthy and powerful David Ortiz, a career performance from Mike Lowell, and an unsustainable level of play from Jacoby Elsbury(just to name a few). There was some series magic there.
This year, our all-world ace has been pilled all around the ballpark, there is a new word called "Mannywood", David Ortiz leaves the clubhouse without talking to the media after game three and points fingers after game 4...all while doing next to nothing at the plate, Mike Lowell is having surgery and is out for the season, and our collective leadoff hitters are 0-24 in the ALCS. Tough to generate magic with the aforementioned issues.
If this team has any chance of creating the magic of years past, it will require change. Change in the way the Fenway faithful scream for their team (seriously, the crowd has been terrible), change in the way our pitching staff goes after the Rays (pitch inside for once!, knock them on their ass if you have to!) and change in the raw confidence of the team (seriously...do we need Kevin Millar back?). I've typed the word change so much you'd think I'm working for Obama....
It starts tomorrow night with Dice-K on the mound at home. The fans need to be loud, excited and pumped. The players need to remember they are the world champions playing on their home turf.......and maybe with a little luck, the Rays will come back to earth and be susceptible to some Red Sox magic.
I'm knocking on wood, go Sox.