BASEBALL TONIGHT EXTRA

Red Sox looking like a dynasty


The Red Sox were a baseball dynasty in the early part of the 20th century, and they're the closest thing baseball has to a dynasty in the early part of the 21st century. Boston won its second World Series title in the last four seasons, completing another sweep in downing the Rockies in four straight games.

The finale was a nailbiter, but true to form, Boston's best came through under pressure. This time the stars were Mike Lowell and Jon Lester, who not only share a bond as champions, but also as cancer survivors. Jonathan Papelbon closed out the World Series with a five-out save, the longest save in a clincher since Jesse Orosco and the Mets beat them in 1986.

The Red Sox are a baseball rarity in the wild-card era, a team that had the best regular-season record and was also the best team in the postseason. That doesn't happen too often during a time of great parity in the sport, and it's a rarity well worth remembering.

WON WORLD SERIES
HAD BEST RECORD IN BASEBALL, LAST 25 YEARS
TEAM RECORD
2007 Red Sox 96-66
1998 Yankees 114-48
1989 Athletics 99-63
1986 Mets 108-54
1984 Tigers 104-58
* -- Red Sox tied for best record in MLB

WORLD SERIES GAME 4 CHAT WITH KEITH LAW
Following are excerpts from Keith Law's chat Sunday night as the Red Sox clinched the World Series title:

Chris (Fukuoka, Japan): Is Papelbon officially the new Sandman? I remember watching games when Mariano would walk out of the bullpen, and all of my hopes and dreams shattered instantly. Something tells me that Papelbon has started giving off that vibe.

Law: He's about as automatic as it gets. Nathan is in the discussion. I think Corpas can get there -- I'm a little obsessed with guys who sink their fastballs like that.

Wes (Morgantown, WV): How many more years does Varitek legitimately have left in him?

Law: I think he's about done. His bat has just slowed too much, and he's slowing down behind the plate too.



Howard (San Francisco): To what would you attribute a presumed sweep of Colorado after their historic stretch (20 of 21 against NL teams). Is the talent gap between the leagues THAT pronounced in your opinion?

Law: The talent gap is huge, but you can't just rely on that to explain the sweep. There's some luck/flukiness involved, and the Rockies' starters (especially Francis and Fogg, two fringy-stuff guys) were not a great matchup for the Red Sox hitters.

Matt (RI): If the Rockies didn't have that eight-day layoff, don't you think this would be a completely different series? The Rockies were doomed by their incredible run.

Law: No, I don't think that made much of a difference. Boston is just a better club.

BASEBALL TONIGHT MINUTE
Karl Ravech, John Kruk and Steve Phillips sum up Boston's four-game sweep of the overmatched Rockies in the World Series.
2007 WORLD SERIES BY THE NUMBERS
MOST WORLD SERIES CHAMPIONSHIPS
FRANCHISE NO.
Yankees 26
Cardinals 10
Athletics 9
Red Sox 7
Dodgers 6
Reds 5
Pirates 5
Giants 5
WORLD SERIES MVPS:
THIRD BASEMEN
PLAYER TEAM
Mike Lowell 2007 Red Sox
Troy Glaus 2002 Angels
Scott Brosius 1998 Yankees
Ray Knight 1986 Mets
Ron Cey 1981 Dodgers
Mike Schmidt 1980 Phillies
Pete Rose 1975 Reds
Brooks Robinson 1970 Orioles
MOST SCORELESS RELIEF IP:
SINGLE POSTSEASON
PLAYER YEAR IP
Goose Gossage 1981 14.1
Mariano Rivera 1998 13.1
Mariano Rivera 1999 12.1
Ken Dayley 1985 12.0
Bruce Kison 1971 11.0
Jonathan Papelbon 2007 10.2
Dave Dravecky 1984 10.2
Dave Giusti 1971 10.2

QUOTABLE
"It took all 25 of us to get the job done. It's just phenomenal."
-- Red Sox closer Jonathan Papelbon, who saved the final three World Series games


 

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