Couple high fives is all they needed last night.
(Globe) — Except for the acknowledgment on the videoboard that the “Red Sox have clinched a 2013 postseason playoff berth,” there was virtually no mention and certainly no celebration of the accomplishment Thursday night. The crowd stood and applauded for much of the ninth inning in anticipation, but there was no wild postgame celebration on the field, just the normal shaking of hands and patting of backsides following a 3-1 win over the Orioles. If ever a team could have boasted, celebrated, went a little crazy over sealing a postseason spot, it would be this one, but the only liquid spotted in the Red Sox clubhouse were the bottles of Vitamin water and cans of soda in the old refrigerator at the far end of the clubhouse. “We didn’t even talk about it,” David Ortiz said. “We never even had a discussion about it,” echoed Daniel Nava. “I don’t know who made that call, to be honest with you. I know our goal here has always been to win the division, and when that happens I’m sure we’ll celebrate. But this is great. We worked hard to get to this stage and now we want to finish that off.”
If the Sox went berserk on the field last night and started spraying champagne all over the place and jumping on each other, no one would have blamed them. If Koji went out to the mound in goggles and did an Irish jig, and Gomes punted a helmet into bolivion, no one would have blamed them. They’ve come a very long way from being not only the least liked team, but a borderline hated team, in Boston just about a year ago.
But they didn’t celebrate. They didn’t do anything. Over in Arizona the Dodgers were having a pool party and doing the worm around the clubhouse just because they made the playoffs. They celebrated being one of the 10 best teams out of 30. That’s celebrating being in the 33rd percentile. That’s celebrating a C.
Well celebrating a C isn’t this team’s style. They recognize that Boston has been spoiled over the last decade plus. They recognize, and embrace, the fact that making the playoffs isn’t a grand accomplishment. It’s expected here. It’s what you do in Boston. So, they treated last night just like any other game. Like the blue collar team they’ve been all season, they showed up to work, had some fun, then grabbed their lunch pail and went home after the job was done. No need for overt celebration, no need for hugs and dances. It was just another day in the office and they know there’s a long road ahead of them. Clinching a playoff spot means nothing, they’ll celebrate when they’ve accomplished something. And I love that.