Here at N2KSports, we usually do a little intro of other important things because they’re arguably more important than what happened on this day in sports. But not today. Today is the day when the Curse of the Bambino was officially broken. After 86 years, this day 11 years ago, the Boston Red Sox won their first World Series since 1918. Maybe outside of former Teddy Roosevelt and gangster John Gotti being born, this is the most important thing to happen on this day. The Sox ended a magical 2004 year with a dominating finish.
Sox fans had waited and waited and waited for this moment for so long. 86 years long. There had been opportunities to end the Curse of the Bambino long before 2004. Like in 1946, 1967, 1975 and, of course, 1986. All the pain and suffering of Red Sox Nation was swept under the rug, as the Red Sox brought out the brooms against the St. Louis Cardinals, winning the series 4-0. Game 1 was a back and forth game in which the Sox won 11-9 on the strength of a Mark Bellhorn, of all people, home run off of Pesky’s pole in right which gave Boston the lead in the eight inning. Boston should have won the game in an easier fashion but they shot themselves in the foot with four errors. The series settled down after game one with Curt Schilling and Pedro Martinez shutting down the Cardinals’ bats in games two and three. With the sweep on the line, the Red Sox pitched Derek Lowe who threw eight shutout innings, which led to closer Keith Foulke closing the door on the series and the Curse. The last pitch was grounded back to Foulke and Red Sox radio broadcaster Joe Castiglione gave a great call of– “Swing and a ground ball stabbed by Foulke! He has it, he underhands to first – and the Boston Red Sox are the World Champions! For the first time in 86 years, the Red Sox have won baseball’s world championship! Can you believe it?” I seriously have that quote memorized in my head.
Manny Ramirez won the World Series MVP and Derek Lowe became the first pitcher ever to win each series clinching game for his team.
I was only eight years old when the Sox won it all in 2004. I don’t remember much about the series or that year for that matter. But I do remember watching the final outs being recorded with my parents, with my sister being sick upstairs. I was told not to wake her up but I didn’t care. I didn’t know the entire history of the Red Sox. I knew about the Curse but I didn’t know the extent of the pain that my parents, grandparents, your parents, your grandparents and maybe yourselves had even felt before that. But I remember where I was. who I was with and the feeling I got when Keith Foulke fielded that ground ball and tossed it over to Doug Mientkiewicz for that final out that ended the Curse of the Bambino, and if you remember that last out, I’m sure you’ll never forget where you were, who you were with and what your reaction was when it finally ended.