The Minnesota Twins have set an MLB record for consecutive postseason losses, topping a dreadful dishonor once held by the Boston Red Sox.
They say that records are meant to be broken. Well, this is one section in the history books that the Boston Red Sox are thrilled to pass along to another franchise.
The Minnesota Twins were smacked around by the New York Yankees in Game 1 of the ALDS, extending their postseason losing streak to a major league record 14 consecutive games.
Much of the damage has come at the hands of the Yankees, who have won 11 straight postseason games against the Twins. Minnesota’s playoff losing streak began in 2004 when they lost the final three games of the best-of-five ALDS to the Yankees. New York swept them in three games in both 2009 and 2010. The Bronx Bombers also eliminated the Twins in the 2017 Wild Card Game.
This is the sixth year that Minnesota has qualified for the postseason since the streak began and the Yankees knocked them out in four of their previous trips. The Oakland A’s swept them in three games in the 2006 ALDS.
It must feel as though history is repeating itself for Twins fans as they find themselves in a 1-0 hole in the ALDS against – who else – the Yankees.
Until last night, the Red Sox held a share of that record of futility. Boston lost 13 consecutive playoff games from 1986-1995.
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At least Boston’s streak didn’t begin in the first round of the playoffs. Their dreadful losing streak began with the final two games of the ’86 World Series. They fell to the Mets in extra-innings in Game 6, the infamous Bill Buckner game, before losing Game 7 at Shea Stadium.
There were no Wild Cards in 1988 and only two divisions. An 89-win Red Sox team won the East and went on to face the Oakland A’s in the ALCS, where they were promptly swept in four games by the 104-win juggernaut. Boston suffered the same fate two years later in a rematch with Oakland.
By 1995, the leagues had been split into three divisions and introduced the Wild Card. The Red Sox were swept in three games by the Cleveland Indians in that year’s ALDS.
Pedro Martinez finally snapped the streak by beating Cleveland in Game 1 of the 1998 ALDS. Unfortunately, the Red Sox immediately started a new streak by dropping the final three games of the series.
That new streak would extend to five when the Indians took the first two games of the 1999 ALDS but the Red Sox would rally back to win the next three games. The decisive Game 5 is fondly remembered as one of the defining moments of Pedro’s career with the ace battling a back injury to toss six shutout innings of relief, giving his offense the opportunity to climb out of an early hole. This was the first postseason series the Red Sox had won since the 1986 ALCS against the California Angels.
A postseason losing streak that spanned a decade is a distant memory now that the Red Sox have been crowned World Series champions four times since it happened. That’s the thing about streaks – eventually, they end.
Minnesota’s streak of postseason futility will end one day. Hopefully soon considering who they are currently matched up against. Now that the Twins have overtaken the record for consecutive playoff losses, it’s time for Red Sox fans to get back to rooting for them to knock out the Yankees.