Game 4 goes into Celts not so great eight

Let’s take a brief break from the game of baseball, and the Red Sox.

As most of my long-time readers know, following the Boston Celtics — a team I don’t cover and therefore can be a fan of — is one of my biggest hobbies.

So yes, last night’s loss in Game 4 of the Eastern Semis was a crusher in every sense of the word. I started watching the Celtics in 1983-84, at the height of the Bird era. Last night’s game ranks as one of the eight worst Celtics losses I’ve ever endured.

Here is the complete list:

Game 4 of the ’87 Finals. The heroic and wounded Celtics are about to tie the Lakers 2-2 in the Finals, but they blow a 13 point lead in the last four minutes. Larry Bird hits a 3 with 16 seconds left to put them up by 2. They foul Kareem, who misses the second free throw but the rebound goes off McHale’s hand and goes out of bounds. Magic hits the hook shot. Bird somehow breaks free and gets a clean look (albeit falling off the court) at the buzzer and the ball goes in and out. Down 3-1, that series was over just like this one.

Game 6 of the ’85 Finals. Even down 3-2 in the Finals, Celts were in decent shape because they had both Games 6 and 7 at home, and at that point in the rivalry, the Lakers had still never beaten them in the Finals. But aside from McHale, nobody shows up. Lakers win the title on the parquet. Still makes me want to puke just thinking about it.

Game 5 of the ’88 Conference Finals against the Pistons: Very similar to last night. An aging team near the end of its run. Celts are leading comfortably most of the night but  run out of gas. They get a shot at the buzzer to win it in regulation but Bird misses it. Then they get smoked in OT (sound familiar)? The inevitable happens in Game 6. Pistons move on to the Finals. For all practical purposes, the original Big 3 era is over.

Game 5 of the ’90 First Round against the Knicks. They blow a 2-0 series lead and Ewing helps Knicks win Game 5 by banking in a 3. are you kidding me? Sadly, this was the last game of Dennis Johnson’s career, but he had a great game.

Game 4 of the ’92 Conference Semis against Cleveland. People forget that the Celtics were on a mega roll late in that season, led by a recharged Mchale, an ageless Parish, a blossoming Reggie Lewis and an inspired Ed Pinckney and an overachieving John Bagley. Bird is out for most of their late-season run, when they win something like 16 out of 17 and sweep the Pacers in the first round. Bird actually comes back for Game 4, the game i’m talking about, and a win would have put them up 3-1 in the series and set them up for a conference finals match with Jordan and the Bulls. Reggie gets fouled at the end of regulation. They don’t call it. in Overtime, Bird and Reggie run a give and go, and Bird somehow misses the layup!!! kind of like Rondo last night. Bad bad loss. Cavs end up winning the series in seven. Bird’s career ends after this series.

Game 4 of the ’02 Conference Finals against the Nets. The Celts make the greatest comeback in NBA playoff history to win Game 3. We all remember it. They are up 2-1 in the series. They have game 4 within their grasp but can’t seal the deal. Pierce misses a crucial free throw. Nets tie the series and win the series in six. So much for the honor of getting swept by the Lakers in the Finals.

Game 7 of last year’s Finals. I still can’t speak about it.

And last night.

We can take last night’s game off the list if they somehow come back to win this series, but at this hour, that isn’t feeling very likely.

Now, back to our regularly scheduled programming, where Carl Crawford has increased his hitting streak to 10 games, and Jacoby Ellsbury has a 19-gamer going.

27 Comments

How many attempts to reach 500 failed? I can count 3 times. Granted Lester wasn’t sharp and did not have command of all his pitches. But the game was still winnable. Ellsbury got picked off at 2B? Crawford’s tying run was out at the plate, another daring attempt by Bogar. Stop making excuses, someone has to go.

Maybe this is the year the Sox start out crappy and wake up………just don’t sleep too long! Go Sox!

Any chance we can get LACKEY out of BOSTON he STINKS

How sweep it is! After many futile attempts against lesser teams, the Sox have finally reached 500. Lester wasn’t sharp despite the win. Beckett has rightfully reclaimed the ace status at least for the time being. The Sox can’t beat Jays and Orioles and yet came out strong against better teams like the Angels and the Yanks. Have the Sox turned the corner and taking off from hereon. We shall see.

Well, Andy, the good thing about this sweep going forward is that we get to play one of those “lesser teams”– the Oreos. Perhaps we can build on that sweep in NY and actually defeat the O’, and turn our fortunes around against them. Here goes nada! GO SOX!

Greg: The Sox almost lost to the lesser team thanks to Dice-K and lost the big mo built on the Yanks sweep. What a comeback! The Sox gave up a lot in terms of talents and cash to acquire AGon. Where could the Sox be without AGon’s bat? This guy is a hero every night.
Wakefield can’t fare worse than Dice-K and Lackey. Look forward to the weekend series against the Cubbies.

Andy, two comebacks in a row, no less! Sweeping the Yankees was not looking too promising, either, but we showed some resilience, and we did so in this game, also! Happily, Tito didn’t leave Dice-K in any longer, though! I am glad we are not going to see Lackey’s new windup tonight– no matter what happens! The Cubs series should be fun, all right! GO SOX!

I said it many many posts ago that Aceves is a good pickup. We can count on Aceves on a given night for a solid inning or two and can spot start and will on Saturday v. Cub. Of course if his back holds up. I predict Aceves goes for 5 innings and gives up 2-3 runs. Go Sox.

The lesser teams are not so lesser this year. We won’t walk over the Oreos and Blue Jays like years past. The Sox will have to play hard every day….not just against the better teams. The Blue Jays and Oreos are much improved and have plenty of incentive to win. Go Sox!!!!!!

Craig: The Sox have problems with the lesser Oreos since Buck Showalter took over the helm. I am not saying he is a good manager. It is just the coincidence. The Sox have to learn to be consistent beating big teams as well as the (sub)500 teams.
I believe Dice-K is truly hurting as evidenced by his reluctance to throw fastballs. Why Dice is getting hurt so easily and often? IF Dice-K is healthy, I would like pick him over Lackey. It’s not my decision to pay that kind of money to him and it’s not my money either.

When Showalter took over last season the Orioles won something like 13 out of 15 games. He’s done a much better job in this narrow window than the other Mgrs that they have had in th epast.

The Sox got rained out last night. The Yanks are hurting and so are the O’s. If the Sox can’t crush the O’s and need a comeback the Tigers are going to eat them for breakfast.
Fortunately the Sox have their best arms going against the Tigers (assuming Clay has found his stride). Gonsalez is a pleasure to watch and has been amazing. Even David Ortiz is showing some life. Now about Dustin and his move to later in the lineup — its needed. We have talent being wasted in the 8th position. Tito needs to move on.

When the team is in the groove, the Sox win. The Sox could easily lose 1-2. Buchholz was superb despite career high pitch counts. Jackson’s check swing could be ball 4 in the bottom 7. If the Sox were in the funk, the leadoff double in the 9th would likely be scored. The Sox hitters made Coke look like Cy Young. Cameron can’t hit but still can play defensively.

A gutsy win with everything against them. Clay should win an award last night. It was clear he had enough after walking three batters (two by hitting them) yet he gutted it out. Sadly the headlines focused on Salty. Clay also showed that you can throw more than 100 pitches and live to tell about it.
Sox still can’t hit as a team but at least they found one time to do it. Cameron is a player I like. He toughs it out. That’s all I ask a player is that they stick it out and act like a pro (of course hitting and defense help.)

Great to see some commentors returning to this site

I don’t understand why Crawford is still in the 8th hole at least for tonight. Crawford is 8 out of 23 against Verlander. I would bat Crawford 2d tonight.

Wow, really? 1) Andy, Crawford is still adjusting to a real fan-based sport atmosphere. Let’s not get stupid and make moves based solely on stats from different environments.

Robert – Only visited to see what it was like, “Brownie” couldn’t write his way out of a bad cartoon!
Dave – The talent isn’t being wasted in the 8th position, as witnessed tonight. Until CC gets more comfortable and consistent he is GREAT in that position. Think about it, if the middle of the order gets on and CC is doing well we have him there to knock runs in. Else if we start towards the bottom of the order and CC is doing well we have a speedy threat on base for the top of our order to bring home. It’s all good – not rocket science.

Bard cost Beckett a well deserved win. Lowrie had a chance to be the hero. But he humbly deferred it to Crawford. Why Crawford is still batting 8th? What’s lost in the mist of things (JD, Papi, Beck) was Albers scoreless 7th. Paps made things exciting and challenging.

Andy, I hope Carl can move up in the lineup, esp. if he keeps up the recent production in that new slot. He’s been productive in the 8th slot, though, and it’s tempting not to mess with that too much.
Beckett left with a stiff neck? HUH?? Where have we heard that before? Oh, wait– JD Drew! Don’t tell me we’re going there?!… :/
I am also not excited at all about the addition of Franklin Morales. I hope he performs better now than he did in the 07 WS, when we beat him up and stole his lunch money– TWICE. Not exactly a move I have great confidence in, to say the least.
I wish Oki well. He was not getting the job done of late, but he was an important member of our pitching staff. Take care, Oki-san!
GO SOX!

Albers is doing very well for us, Andy, you’re right. He is a lot like Atch was last year (and may still be, this year)– not perfect, but pretty darn solid. I hope he keeps it up! GO SOX!

Greg: I think Crawford as he is hitting now will (would) be more productive if moving up the order where he belongs. Moving up will furher boost his confidence, ego, and pride.
For the last two outings, Beck left after the 6th. He ostensibly had a stiff neck last night. What was the manager’s excuse the previous outing where he had 6 (?) run lead.
I wish Oki well and thanks for the memory. Oki was an important and integral part of the Sox in 2007 especially in the WS against the Rockies.

I’m happy for the new link that get’s us here!!
Good stretch for our Sox recently!!
IDOBELIEVE!!! DOYOUBELIEVE???

… and as far as where Crawford’s batting??
IF IT AIN’T BROKE, DON’T FIX IT!!! (yet) lol

Dave, “Tito needs to move on” ??????
What does that mean?

I think that I’m glad that I didn’t get to see that game. I kept track until the 7th on game day and listened to WEEI, then I had to go to sleep.
Well, today is a new blank score card on which the Sox can write another win!
Come on guys, get your Rose Colored Glasses on.!!
IDOBELIEVE!!

BP Implosion Night. Man, that was tough to listen to (glad I didn’t watch it!). Wheeler did well (for a change) coming off the DL– I hope he can keep that up. I just hope that Marlon Byrd will be OK, after that HBP! GO SOX!

The sub pitchers did well. Aceves exceeded my expectation. Wake is more durable than Beckett. Lol. Beckett is the ace for the time being. It would be better if Beck can go an extra inning.
As I was complimenting Albers the day before, he imploded on Saturday night. A tough loss. Considering where the Sox are coming from. ½ game off the pace isn’t too bad. Go Sox.

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