The following are the top 3 players in Red Sox history who lost a big game, but somehow became more popular than they were before. Nathan Eovaldi. 2018 World Series Game 3 vs Los Angeles Dodgers.
He is the reason that I created this list. I’ve never seen anything like the outpouring of support for Eovaldi after he gave up Max Muncy’s walk-off home run. The support was justified because of what Eovaldi did that night in relief, keeping the Red Sox in the game, sacrificing his chance to start game 4, battling in the longest World Series game ever played and when Muncy’s homer cleared the fence, Red Sox Nation only wanted to embrace the guy who embodied everything the 2018 Red Sox stood for.
Obviously there was a happy ending following Eovaldi’s game 3 loss to the Dodgers, what with the Sox winning the series and all. All that sacrifice and selflessness has been parlayed nicely into a 4-year contract to keep the 28-year old right hander in Boston.
Tim Wakefield, 2003 ALCS Game 7 vs New York Yankees.
The horns had gone on this game’s goat long before Tim Wakefield even took the mound on that night. No Red Sox fan worth their salt blamed Tim Wakefield after he gave up Aaron Boone’s walk off, the animosity landed right where it should have, at the feet of Grady Little. If anything, Boone’s home run only endeared Wake to Red Sox fans even more, the pawn in a chess game controlled by a mad man.
Bruce Hurst, 1986 World Series Game 7 vs New York Mets.
Hurst had a masterful postseason in 1986, posting a 2.40 ERA vs the Angels in the ALCS and was even better in the World Series against New York. Hurst was 2-0 against the Mets heading into the decisive game 7 at Shea Stadium, and had already been named the series MVP before Buckner’s error in game 6 revoked his hardware.
Most people forget that the Red Sox actually had a 3-0 lead going into the bottom of the 6th inning of game 7 before Hurst gave up 3 runs which opened the flood gates for the shaky Sox pen to cough up 5 more runs the next two innings.
Calvin Schiraldi took the loss, which could be the title of any book about the 1986 World Series (he lost games 6 AND 7!) Sox fans could have unfairly blamed Hurst for the L, but they didn’t, Hurst was seen as the playoff warrior that he was; the uncrowned World Series MVP.
By: The Unnamed Source
The “Unamed Source” is famous in media circles these days. This one in particular works in local sports media, but for any number of reasons, wants to stay anonymous.