Do you believe in comebacks? Yes!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

yes.jpg YEAH, BABY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Last year hurt [So did 1999. And 1986. And 1978–ed. Yes, yes, I get your point.] And seeing the Red Sox on the cover on Sports Illustrated this September was also disturbing. But being the first team to come back down 0-3 to win a best-of-seven playoff series in baseball and to ...

By , a professor of international politics at the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University and co-host of the Space the Nation podcast.
590438_951405487_yes2.jpg
590438_951405487_yes2.jpg

yes.jpg

yes.jpg

YEAH, BABY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Last year hurt [So did 1999. And 1986. And 1978–ed. Yes, yes, I get your point.] And seeing the Red Sox on the cover on Sports Illustrated this September was also disturbing. But being the first team to come back down 0-3 to win a best-of-seven playoff series in baseball and to do it by beating the Yankees in The House That Ruth Built…. oh, yes, that does feel good. And props to Red Sox manager Terry Francona, who stuck with Johnny Damon and Mark Bellhorn even though they struggled, who was smart enough to get Keith Foulke in there early and often, and who survived his one truly idiotic decision — bring Pedro Martinez in to start the seventh inning of game seven. And congratulations to the Yankees — despite some suspect starting pitching, despite Jason Giambi having no impact whatsoever, despite having George Steinbrenner as a boss, Joe Torre managed to get this team to Game Seven of the ALCS, within three outs of advancing to the World Series. Still, this is going to sting a little for Yankee fans — as Baseball Crank put it, “The Sox have extracted revenge for last season; the Yankees, gigantic payroll, stacked roster and all, have choked in a way no baseball team has ever choked.” So….. go read these wise words from Adam Smth. All I can say as a Sox fan is, I feel your pain, and you should have a fine time rooting for the Astros or Cardinals. Eight days ago I wrote:

This may sound like the head of the U.S. Patent Office back in the 1890’s who allegedly said that there was nothing left to be invented, but I find it hard to conceive of how this series can top what’s happened in the past two years.

Down 0-3, coming back against Mariano Rivera — twice — and then Curt Schilling and Keith Foulke and Derek Lowe pitching their hearts out. Yeah, this tops what’s happened in the past two years. UPDATE: One final thought — with all the great divisional series last year, I was worried that this year’s baseball playoffs would be anticlimactic. As Brendan Roberts points out, that fear was misplaced:

In case you missed it, the championship series have brought us police in riot gear, a 19-run game, a Game 7 hero (Johnny Damon) who came into the game batting .103 in the series, the best closer in the AL — if not all of baseball — blowing two saves, Curt Schilling getting bombed in Game 1 then shutting down his nemesis in Game 6 with a bloody ankle (cue The Natural soundtrack), a nearly blown 8-0 lead, five-hour games, a controversial play at first base, the Astros’ aces pitching awfully in team wins, an unheralded rookie (Brandon Backe) holding the best offense in the NL to one hit in eight innings in a hitters park, an LCS-record 21 homers between the Cardinals and Astros, chants of “Who’s your daddy!” from Yankees fans, a Game 7 gem from a terrible road pitcher (Derek Lowe) throwing on two days’ rest … and the best four teams in baseball on display for us all to see.

This series also achieved something I had thought was impossible — it made my non-sports-watching wife understand at some level why people care about sports.

Daniel W. Drezner is a professor of international politics at the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University and co-host of the Space the Nation podcast. Twitter: @dandrezner

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