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10 things that happened since Red Sox last won a playoff game

Posted by Obnoxious Boston Fan  October 4, 2013 05:53 AM

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86 years was bad enough.

Welcome to the "War of 1,812."

The Red Sox face the Tampa Bay Rays Friday in Game 1 of the ALDS.

It also marks Day 1,812 since Boston last won a playoff game.

Much has occurred since Oct. 18, 2008. On that Saturday night in St. Petersburg [the Rays may be aquatic creatures but the baseball team bearing their name actually plays its games on dry land], Jason Varitek's homer in the sixth inning highlighted Boston's 4-2 victory in Game 6 of the ALCS.

The Red Sox, along with the rest of the baseball world, watched in shock and awful as the Rays won the pennant the following evening with a frustrating-for-Boston 3-1 victory.

The cowbells tolled for Boston.

The loser in that game was Jon Lester, who gets the start for Boston Friday afternoon.

But much has changed in our world since Boston's last playoff victory. For one, this country has gone through the closest thing to an economic depression since the United States beat the Soviets at Lake Placid on tape-delay.

Here's one depressing baseball economic statistic before we get to our list:

$790.2 million.

That's how much John W. Henry and his business partners have spent on player salaries during this playoff drought.

For that kind of money, Henry could have purchased The Boston Globe [$70 million], The Washington Post [$250 million], signed Felix Hernandez [$175 million] and still had enough left over to cover about 95 percent Tampa Bay Rays payroll [$314.5 million] during that time span.

To the list:

10 things that have happened since the last time the Red Sox won a playoff game.

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10. The iPad

The final grand breakthrough product created by Apple before the death of Steve Jobs had been in the planning stages in various forms since the early 2000s. Like so many things Jobs created, it went through multiple versions before it was formally introduced on Jan. 27, 2010. Just over three years later, The New York Times [the former Parent Company of this blog] reported that 34% of Americans over 18 owned a tablet. And probably a whole lot higher percentage of those under 18.

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9. Justin Bieber's Musical Career

OK, perhaps "musical" is stretching it a bit. The Biebs and his mom began posting videos on You Tube back in 2007. But his professional career wasn't launched until May 18, 2009 with the single "One Time." For some, "One Time" would have been enough. But the video of that song has more than 335 million views on, where else, You Tube.

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8. Instagram

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The photo-sharing service was launched by a pair of Stanford grads in 2010 and amassed more than 200 users by April of 2012. That month, it was sold to Facebook for $1 billion in cash and stock. [Facebook went public in June of 2012]. In 2013, Forbes tagged the value of the Red Sox at $1.3 billion. But the cost of Instagram could have been enough to purchase the Celtics and Bruins [with a 10 percent package discount].

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7. Tyler Seguin of the Boston Bruins

Think we found Seguin's babysitter, or at least his wingman.

A year to the day of the Red Sox last postseason victory, the Boston Bruins sent Phil Kessel to Toronto for a 2010 first-round pick, a 2011 first-round pick, and a 2010 second-round pick. Those picks allowed the Bruins to draft Seguin, Dougie Hamilton, and Jared Knight. Seguin was traded to Dallas on July 4, along with Rich Peverley. He made his Stars debut Thursday night against former teammate Tim Thomas.

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6. Theo Epstein's "bridge period"

Amid the economic calamity of the Red Sox payroll these past five years, the team's former general manager had hoped to rein in those big money contracts, avoid free-agent mistakes and retain draft picks. On Dec. 9, 2009, at the baseball winter meetings, Epstein spoke word that became prophetic and ignored:

"We're kind of in a bridge period, We still think that if we push some of the right buttons, we can be competitive at the very highest levels for the next two years. But we don't want to compromise too much of the future for that competitiveness during the bridge period, but we all don't want to sacrifice our competitiveness during the bridge just for the future."

A week later, the Red Sox had spent $110.5 million to sign John Lackey, Mike Cameron and Marco Scutaro. Cameron retired after the 2011 season and Scutaro was NLCS MVP and won a World Series ring with the Giants in 2012.

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5. Angry Birds

It's the No. 1 paid app of all time made its debut on the Apple iOS in December of 2009. The original version of the game was downloaded more than 700 million times in less than three years. A 3D "Angry Birds" movie is planned for release in 2016.

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4. President Obama

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As a rule, we avoid politics in this space. There have been two presidential elections since Boston's last baseball playoff victory, both won by Barack Obama. The only world championship won by Boston during the Obama Administration/Red Sox playoff drought came courtesy of the Bruins in 2011. The Bruins visited the White House the following January, minus Thomas [seen above being mocked by Capitals fans during the 2012 playoffs].

The goalie proceeded to sit out the next 19 months on in the bunker and on Facebook before re-surfacing on the ice with the Florida Panthers Thursday night. Meanwhile, the Federal Government remained in a partial shutdown.

Last laugh, Thomas.

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3. "The Greatest Team Ever"

Nothing personified the inefficient excess of the past five years in Red Sox Nation more than the signings of Adrian Gonzalez and Carl Crawford. Both joined the Red Sox before the 2011 season at a combined commitment/cost of about $300 million.

Gonzalez hit a two-run homer for the Dodgers Thursday night in the ALDS.

Still, anyone who complains about the trade that sent him, Crawford et. al. to Los Angeles gets sentenced to 10 years of watching the "Red Sox 2011 Anthem." video.

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2. "Modern Family"

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The ABC staple has won four straight Emmys for best Outstanding Comedy Series. Since its debut in September 2009, and continues to score in the ratings. "Modern Family" has earned a total of 45 Emmy nominations and sits behind only �Frasier,� which won the award for best comedy series five years in a row from 1994 to 1998.

Among the other entertainment arrivals since Game 6 of the 2008 ALCS: the "Twilight" movies, Susan Boyle, Adam Lambert and every Twitter and You Tube celebrity ever.

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1. Tom Brady's comeback

OK, not everyone is happy to watch Brady each week.

Since Brady was knocked out of the 2008 season in Week 1, "The Big Three" have migrated from Causeway Street to South Beach and Brooklyn. The Bruins bounced from being swept out of the playoffs, to winning the Stanley Cup, to being knocked out in the first round of the playoffs, to taking the Blackhawks to six games in the Finals.

The Patriots were defending Super Bowl runners-up five years ago this month. They were also without Brady, whose left knee was mauled thanks to our old pal Bernard Pollard [then of the Chiefs] .

After missing virtually the entire 2008 season, Brady has done everything but win another Super Bowl. Even on that front, he walked off the field with less than four minutes to play against the Giants and the lead in Super Bowl XLVI.

But, as we know, he "cannot f--king throw the ball and catch the ball at the same time."

Numerically, he's thrown for 19,374 yards in the regular season, completed 1,590 passes and thrown for 114 TDs since the Red Sox won their last playoff game.

He's also 3-4 [.428] in the postseason during that span.

Which puts him three wins ahead of the Red Sox.

Don't forget to visit our Obnoxious Boston Fan blog. As always, let us know what you think. Post your thoughts here, on our Obnoxious Boston Fan Facebook page, on Twitter @realOBF or e-mail me at obnoxiousbostonfan@hotmail.com.

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Obnoxious Boston Fan offers a fun, unique and biting perspective on the Red Sox, Celtics, Bruins, Patriots and whatever else people are talking about in the world of sports. We More »
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