For many analysts it must have been a surprise to see the Boston Red Sox take the first ticket to the American League Championship Series.
With a year of ups and downs, there was a moment in the MLB season when they were outside the qualifying zone and everything pointed to they weren’t going very far. But these have been the keys to its success.
The Puerto Rican manager who led them to the World Series title in 2018 is back after serving his suspension and his effect on the team is evident: his knowledge of the group and the game and his leadership have been key for the Red Sox.
Stars JD Martínez, Xander Bogaerts and Rafael Devers are expected to be the ones to solve the games with their hits. But if something has made a difference this year with the Red Sox, it is the contribution of players like Hunter Renfroe, Kike Hernández and Alex Verdugo. What Hernandez did in this Division Series against the Rays is historic.
The Red Sox started the 2021 season very strong and then had some really bad times. Cora and her group had the patience to wait for things to change, the skill in the adjustments to change their bad situations and they never lowered their arms.
Especially in this postseason the work of the relief corps has been fundamental, which did the job despite having some casualties. When the starters couldn’t deliver, the bullpen was there to hold them awaiting the offensive reaction.
The bad year in 2020 was behind them since they learned of the return of Alex Cora, and the good atmosphere in the dressing room has been seen on the field. The Red Sox come out to party, like they have nothing to lose, and they regained their winning spirit.