I awoke today with the hangover and stench of a playoff defeat still imprinted on my psyche. Boston’s Monday night collapse against the Tampa Bay Rays was shocking because it has happened to this club so little in 2013. I had become accustomed to winning and started blankly at the television as the Rays tied the game on a dramatic Evan Longoria three-homer off Clay Buchholz and then won it in the bottom of the ninth against Boston’s ironman, Koji Uehara when Jose Lobaton lofted a solo walk-off homer into the right center field stands. Have no fear. Boston will win tonight.
Call it a gut feeling, intuition or whatever talisman you need to invoke, the Red Sox will win tonight in Tampa Bay and move on to the American League Championship Series. Here’s why. Jake Peavy.
My friend David Maril, one of the most astute baseball men I know, has been a huge Peavy fan for years. Why? Because Peavy is as tough as nails, never gives in and when he does give up homers they’re usually of the solo variety.
I’m going out on limb making a prediction but I simply can’t shake the feeling that Peavy has been preparing for a game like this his entire career and will make the most of the opportunity. He won’t get too amped up and get pushed over the edge. Don’t let his screaming fool you, he does that all the time. He’ll be an assassin. He’ll attack the Rays and he’ll win.
Now that I’ve put a target squarely on my back I’m ready to stand by my gut. No statistical analysis, no odds and averages. Just a calming feeling that Jake Peavy is going to come up big and the Sox offense if going to be inspired and back him up.
I could be wrong. I don’t think I am.