Want to relive one of the worst debacles in Red Sox history, replete with finger pointing a-plenty?
You bet you do!
MLB Network will be airing "1986: A Postseason To Remember" tonight (Wednesday, November 9) at 9 PM EST. As the show's title suggests, you may recall 1986 as "that year where Bill Buckner tested our collective faith," but of course there's a great deal more to that story. Beyond just the exciting ALCS that brought the Red Sox to that point and the Sox' bullpen failures, there were the man who had left the Sox in that position to begin with: Roger Clemens and John McNamara.
Or...at least one of them had.
The story goes in two different directions depending on who you ask, and "A Postseason To Remember" gives each one of them the chance to tell their side of the story straight to the camera.
For Clemens, the story is one of managerial failure:
I think I was getting ready to hit and, if I'm not mistaken, McNamera pinch hit Mike Greenwell for me.
McNamara recalls it...rather differently:
We were waiting there at the steps to congratulate him, y'know, getting out of the seventh. And he came down the steps and he said "That's all I can pitch." Quote, unquote. And my answer to him was "You gotta be shittin' me."
It is, to be sure, a "he said, he said" situation. And one that we may never know who is truly to blame for. There's more from McNamara and Clemens on the show, as well as some insight from other former members of the team. And, of course, they hit on all the various other tragedies that marked that particular installment of the fall classic.
So if you want to catch up on old, bad memories and remember that, yes, this most recent travesty could still be coming up 25 years from now, tune in tonight.
(Seriously, though, it's interesting stuff! They're only paying me with a screener and the therapy that can only come from remembering "hey, it's been worse.")