Red Sox Win World Series

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The Boston Red Sox won the World Series on Sunday night, the club’s fourth title in 14 years.

The Red Sox defeated the Los Angeles Dodgers, 5-1, finishing off the Dodgers in Dodger Stadium four games to one.

Much-maligned lefty starting pitcher David Price went seven-plus innings, capping off a remarkable turnaround in the playoffs. Price, who had struggled in previous playoffs appearances, including in the American League Division Series, ended up with a win in the American League Championship Series and two wins in the World Series, plus a successful relief appearance.

First baseman Steve Pearce, who was a reserve player at the beginning of the playoffs, ended up Most Valuable Player of the World Series, thanks to three home runs and a bases-clearing double, all of them timely. He hit two home runs Sunday night, including a two-run home run in the first inning that gave the Res Sox a lead they would never relinquish.

Pearce, 35, grew up in Florida a Red Sox fan thanks to his father, who grew up in Rehoboth. Pearce played for the Cotuit Kettleers in the Cape Cod Baseball League while in college during the summer of 2004.

They are two of the more unlikely heroes on a team that featured a few great players (right fielder Mookie Betts, designated hitter J.D. Martinez, pitcher Chris Sale) and a collection of good players.

Some are calling the 2018 version the greatest Red Sox team ever.

Despite having obvious holes – a low batting average at third base, anemic offensive production in center field and at catcher, troublesome stretches in the bullpen – this year’s team won a franchise record 108 games during the regular season.

Timely hitting, two-out run production, and plus-production at right field, left field, shortstop, and designated hitter made for a fearsome offensive machine. Starting pitching held up well despite not having a single 20-game winner. (Four pitchers had double digits in wins.)

Team defense was solid in most positions, and exceptional in all three outfield positions.

First-year manager Alex Cora is widely credited with calmly and efficiently guiding his stacked team, which never lost more than three games in a row during the regular season.

Then, during the playoffs, the Red Sox blew through the highly regarded 100-game-plus-winning New York Yankees (three games to one) and Houston Astros (four games to one), widely regarded as among the best teams this year.

The Los Angeles Dodgers, who at 92 games won 16 fewer than the Red Sox during the regular season, likewise managed only one win during the World Series – and only after an 18-inning game at home.

Since finally breaking through after an 86-year drought in 2004, the Red Sox have won world championships in 2007, 2013, and now 2018.

It’s the most successful run the Red Sox have had since the beginning of the World Series era, when the club won World Series in 1903, 1912, 1915, 1916, and 1918, as well as a world championship in 1904, when the National League champion refused to play Boston in a series.

Since 2000 the Red Sox have won more World Series than any other team in Major League Baseball:

Boston Red Sox                       4
San Francisco Giants              3
New York Yankees                  2
St. Louis Cardinals                  2

Arizona Diamondbacks          1
Anaheim Angels                       1
Florida Marlins                        1
Chicago White Sox                  1
Philadelphia Phillies               1
Kansas City Royals                  1
Chicago Cubs                           1
Houston Astros                       1