Down is up, red is green, dogs play with cats…

Well, they did it. The Red Sox not only came back from a 3 game deficit in the ALCS, they spanked the Yankees in their own house 10 – 3.

Derek Lowe was pitching unholy nasty stuff. He got one ground-ball out after another and made some of the biggest bats in the American League look sleepy and foolish. The only shaky moment in tonight’s game came when Terry Francona inexplicably pulled a dominant Lowe in the 7th in favor of Pedro Martinez, who managed to give up a pair of runs and remind us that while some relievers can start, not all starters should be brought in in relief.

The real story tonight was Johnny Damon. Damon had spent the rest of this seven game series looking like perhaps his bushy mane of overabundance hair might have started rooting into his brain. For six games he couldn’t hit the broad side of a barn, but tonight he knocked in not one but two home runs and earned himself six RBIs, an ALCS record, according the Joe Buck. But if there’s a big story to this ALCS it is the gutsy, unbelievable performance of Curt Schilling in last night’s game. Just reading about his getting experimental sutures in his ankle to hold it together so he could pitch, and then having them removed after the game to prevent infection made my ankle sore and my stomach churn. Now that’s commitment to your team.

The expressions on the faces of Alex Rodriguez, Derek Jeter and other Yankees in the dugout when the game ended said it all. One face after another said, “what the?” For the second time in three years the Yankees were denied a spot in the World Series by a Wild Card team. And this one stung harder than losing to the Angels in 2002. This time the indignity was served to them by the hated Boston Red Sox.

I’m so torn about this. On the one hand I’m happy anytime the Yankees get denied their birthright. On the other I really, really don’t like the Red Sox. As I’ve said before, the Yankees are contemporaneously vile while the Red Sox are institutionally vile.

Still, with game 7 of the NLCS to be played tomorrow I’m secretly hoping for an Astros victory. Tony LaRussa and the Cardinals have certainly earned a place in the World Series this year with a 105 wins in the regular season, but there’s something really compelling about the prospect of the 2004 World Series mirroring the Presidential Election. The bad part is that then I’d probably have to root for the Red Sox. As a friend said a week or so ago, I don’t really want anyone from Texas winning anything this year.

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