Coulda, woulda, shoulda...
Well what was an amazing season ended in disappointment and despair as the Indians dropped the last three games of the ALCS to lose the series to the Boston Red Sox 4-3. The Indians were outscored 30-5 in the last three games to leave a bitter taste in the mouth of Tribe fans everywhere.
After taking Games 2-4 from the Red Sox, and taking a commanding 3-1 ALCS lead, the Indians couldn't catch a break as they were over matched, overpowered and overwhelmed in Games 5-7. They had their chances in Games 5 and 7 as C. C. Sabthia couldn't hunker down in the 7th inning of Game 5 as a one run game turned into a blowout. In Game 7, it appeared as if the Indians would tie the game at 3 in the 7th inning as Franklin Gutierrez hit a sharp liner down the 3rd base line that should have scored Kenny Lofton from second... until Joel Skinner inexplicatively held Kenny Lofton at 3rd. The Red Sox then exploded for 8 more runs and the Indians dram season was over.
A failure to come through in the clutch once again haunted a Cleveland team in the playoffs as C. C. Sabathia, Fausto Carmona, Rafael Perez, Travis Hafner and to a lesser extent, Grady Sizemore, turned in abysmal performances in the ALCS and did nothing to help the team's cause.
Lost in everything will be the amazing season the Indians had. No one expected them to contend this year in a division with the Tigers, White Sox and Twins. No one expected them to beat those teams handily and win the AL Central. No one expected them to tie for the most wins in MLB with 96. No one gave them a chance to beat the Yankees in the ALDS. And no one gave them a chance to hang with the Red Sox in the ALCS. But they did all of those things.
But no one will remember that. They will only remember the failure to win one game in 3 chances to advance to their first World Series since 2007. It was a great, magical season, it just fell a little short of Cleveland's expectations. This one is going to hurt for long time unless the 2008 version of the Cleveland Indians can dull the pain.