Boston Red Sox seeking their next postseason hero

Sep 6, 2016; San Diego, CA, USA; Boston Red Sox starting pitcher Clay Buchholz (11) pitches during the third inning against the San Diego Padres at Petco Park. Mandatory Credit: Jake Roth-USA TODAY Sports
Sep 6, 2016; San Diego, CA, USA; Boston Red Sox starting pitcher Clay Buchholz (11) pitches during the third inning against the San Diego Padres at Petco Park. Mandatory Credit: Jake Roth-USA TODAY Sports /

The Boston Red Sox have had stars shine in the World Series and playoffs to capture MVP awards. A look at the past and into the present.

The Boston Red Sox are looking for a hero and not the silly season kind dumped on us by Marvel comics. We need a baseball hero. A legitimate force to step up and take charge in the Cleveland series and beyond. As hero’s go with expanded playoffs the hero of one series can become a failure in the next.

In the first World Series, the hero was right-hander Bill Dinneen, who went 3-1 in the series tossing 35 innings. Dinneen won 21 games that season so his performance was no shocker.

In 1912 Smoky Joe Wood won a pair of games and tossed relief in the final game as Boston defeated the New York Giants. This was the inaugural season of Fenway Park and that decisive final game drew slightly over 17,000 to the new ballpark.

More from Red Sox News

In 1915, a young left-hander named Babe Ruth won 18 games during the regular season, but was limited to a pinch-hit appearance in the World Series. Ruth grounded out. The real star for the Red Sox was Rube Foster, who tossed two complete games, winning both, and allowed four earned runs. The hitting start was Harry Hooper, who hit .350 for the series. The Red Sox won in five games.

Hooper hit .333 the following year as Boston again won in five games. Fellow outfielder Duffy Lewis hit .353. Right-hander Ernie Shore won both his starts throwing 17.2 innings and allowing three earned runs. Ruth went 14 innings in his only series start and picked up the win with only a lone earned run crossing the plate.

In 1918 the Red Sox polished off the Cubs in six games with pitching being the key. Ruth and Carl Mays both won two games each in their two starts. The final win by Mays was in the sixth and deciding game.

Has there ever been a more dramatic playoff hero than Curt Schilling? The end of the curse and bloody sock have been immortalized in 2004 post season. Schilling is well established as one of the greatest if not the greatest of big game pitchers. Personally – I would toss him into the mix with Sandy Koufax and Bob Gibson.

The ACLS really belonged to David Ortiz, who hammered three home runs and had 11 RBI against the Yankees, including the usual key game winning hits associated with Papi. Manny Ramirez followed Ortiz to the MVP table by hitting .412 in the sweep against the Cardinals.

More from Red Sox News

Josh Beckett keyed the ACLS in 2007 with two wins, including the final seventh and deciding game. Mike Lowell was brought to Boston with Beckett and in the World Series Lowell captured the MVP with .400 average and a home run in the four-game sweep.

The last championship in 2013 saw the savior of the bullpen Koji Uehara get the ALCS MVP Award, as Ortiz hit a disappointing .091 against the Tigers. Ortiz was saving it for the Cardinals and the World Series with a blistering .688 average. As I said – with the expanded playoffs a hero to goat can be accomplished. Why did the Cards even pitch to Ortiz?

So who will step up?

A look at the Red Sox hero’s it is the usual suspects as the top performers are among the top players. That is what one would expect, but sometimes it is not. For those of us attempting to forget 1986, it was Ray Knight nearing the end of his career and hitting .391 in the WS. Knight also hammered the game-winning home run in game seven.

Next: Boston Red Sox have several Gold Glove candidates

The smart money would place the ACLS and (hopefully) the World Series MVP in the paws of a player of note. Maybe Mookie Betts will show why he will be the MVP? Or Rick Porcello shows why he is a Cy Young Award winner? Maybe Ortiz will do it once again? You never know. If a David Eckstein can rise to the occasion, so the possibility exists that a Travis Shaw or a Brock Holt could.

Who could be a playoff hero for the Red Sox?