Murphy: In praise of bench players, the glue of their teams — and more valuable than ever

From Dale Murphy at The Athletic on August 22, 2019:

Every World Series title is historic, but the 2004 Boston Red Sox occupy a place in baseball lore. From overcoming a 3-0 ALCS deficit against the New York Yankees to ending the infamous 86-year Curse of the Bambino, that Red Sox squad, without question, is all-time special.

And it might not have happened without Dave Roberts.

When you think of the 2004 Red Sox, you probably think of David Ortíz, Manny Ramirez, Pedro Martinez and Curt Schilling, among others — as well you should. But if pinch-runner Dave Roberts doesn’t steal a base in Game 4 of the ALCS, the Red Sox likely don’t win a World Series. Roberts pinch-ran and scored the game-tying run in Game 5 of that ALCS, too.

The rest is history.

Read the full article here (subscription required):

Originally published: August 22, 2019. Last Updated: August 22, 2019.