After examining numerous MLB seasons for the Boston Red Sox from 1998 to 2019, we see patterns very similar to what our examination of the San Francisco Giants revealed: a clear formula for taking on washed-up players, older players, and underperforming players from other teams and turning them into productive members of playoff and World Series-winning teams. With established facts demonstrating PED use for the two franchises across decades, it’s a no brainer to see what’s what here.
The motivation was there: no championships since 1918, even as hated rivals on the East Coast were winning the World Series again. Knowing a potentially rabid fan base—willing to spend its money—was just waiting for something (anything?) to celebrate, the Boston organization took a new approach, fueled by MLB’s enablement of PED use throughout the 1990s. With the acquisition of two players, specifically, the Fenway Frauds were off and running toward 4 titles in a 15-year span.
Eventually, though, the Red Sox evolved as the league did, to sign stealing, which combined with the PEDs, proved to be favorable for the franchise, too. All this time, MLB sat back and did very little; eventually, it had to suspend the sign-stealing manager, but Alex Cora got only a year in isolation. He’s still managing the Boston team in 2022, sadly. So much for telling Americans that cheaters do not prosper.
The capper was the recent induction into the Hall of Fame of the most pronounced Boston cheater. A confirmed PED user, the media even looked the other way on this one, because the player was so affable, cheery, and jolly with journalists through the years—despite the obvious use of drugs that extended his career way beyond a reasonable doubt. Makes you think twice about sports journalists, when they punished very good, honest players like Ted Williams, yet give a pass to a player who cheated.
In the end, the pattern and the record are there for anyone to identify, trace, and understand what really has happened in Boston since the 1990s. Fans either choose to bury their collective heads in the sand, or they choose to embrace facts and legitimate statistical analysis. The argument is that we will never know for sure, but … numbers don’t lie.