Skip to content

Karma helped the Red Sox win the ALCS? Um, OK.

Oct 22, 2013, 5:12 PM EDT

ALCS - Detroit Tigers v Boston Red Sox - Game Six Getty Images

Mitch Albom has made a boatload of money telling stories in recent years. Way more than he’s made writing and analyzing about sports.  So while sports is his day job, it’s not at all surprising that he’s big on inserting dramatic narrative into things.  For example, from his column yesterday, talking about why the Red Sox beat the Tigers in the ALCS:

The Tigers were simply beaten by a faster, more defensive, more opportunistic team with a finer bullpen and — and this is important — better karma. You didn’t realize until you got to Fenway and saw the B Strong carved into the outfield grass and hanging on the Green Monster wall, how much the Boston Marathon bombings six months ago gave unity and purpose to this team and city, kind of like the New Orleans Saints and Hurricane Katrina or the New York Yankees and 9/11.

This week a lot of reporters who don’t spend a lot of time covering baseball will ask the Red Sox about the Marathon Bombing and their beards and all manner of other things that make for better stories than they do baseball analysis.  And it’ll be fine because the World Series draws reporters to the game who don’t normally cover baseball so, for them, that angle is new and fresh.

Not sure what Albom’s excuse is. Not sure how, in this day and age, a reporter is able to get away with claiming that “karma” and some external “unity and purpose” had an “important” bearing on the outcome of a sporting event. But good for Mitch all the same.

  1. cktai - Oct 22, 2013 at 5:14 PM

    Nonsense. The reason why the Red Sox won was because they had 8.6 tWtW while the Tigers only had 5.6

  2. tfbuckfutter - Oct 22, 2013 at 5:17 PM

    The Yankees lost the World Series after 9/11.

    • indaburg - Oct 22, 2013 at 6:34 PM

      Pshaw to your “facts.” Their Karma Factor in 2001 was off the charts. They won.

    • schm1471 - Oct 22, 2013 at 7:39 PM

      Also the Saints won the Superbowl like 5 years after Katrina. Sometimes karma lays in wait for years before it strikes…

      • stex52 - Oct 23, 2013 at 12:59 PM

        BTW, it wouldn’t be terrible if Mitch actually looked up the meaning of “karma.” He might be surprised. Although I fear he is beyond enlightenment.

  3. Jack Marshall - Oct 22, 2013 at 5:21 PM

    His excuse? He’s a fraud. I’ll always remember Mitch holding forth on the Sports Reporters after the Yankees won Game #3 of the 2004 ALCS, going on and on about how this proved how superior the Yankees were, and how they could just turn it on, and how the Red Sox were just helpless against the magic of that franchise. I had just made what turned into a very lucrative bet (sure I was lucky!) that the Red Sox would win four straight, based on the fact that the two teams were actually very even, and my conviction that the Red Sox have always been most dangerous when they are counted out (and most vulnerable when victory seems certain.) Albom was so smug, and had so little of substance or analysis to base his certitude on.

    • lazlosother - Oct 22, 2013 at 5:50 PM

      As a Yankee fan I would post something rude to you, good sir. But I can’t think of anything to post. I remember having a really bad feeling after game 4. It had nothing to do with momentum or chemistry, just the fact that a killer team seemed to be about to go on a roll.

      I remember watching the WS and thinking the Cards had no chance from game 1 on. That was a run by Deus, it was something to be admired.

    • jlovenotjlo - Oct 22, 2013 at 9:14 PM

      Wow! What odds did you get on the Red Sox taking it in 7 when they were down 3-0???

  4. paul621 - Oct 22, 2013 at 5:42 PM

    So just because you don’t believe in something, no one else can write about it or believe it was a factor?

  5. szapata03 - Oct 22, 2013 at 5:48 PM

    [Vomiting noise]

    Then what sick, twisted thing did the Cubs do to deserve their end of karma, Mitch?

    • addictedzone - Oct 23, 2013 at 8:01 AM

      They called themselves “Cubs”

  6. chacochicken - Oct 22, 2013 at 5:50 PM

    Classic Fair world fallacy.

  7. 18thstreet - Oct 22, 2013 at 5:53 PM

    He’s right. Things have been sunshine and rainbows in Detroit lately. It’s heaven on earth out there. You wouldn’t want those people to have something to celebrate or they’d be all “Look at me! My new mayor hasn’t been indicted yet!” or “I’m so great! My house is still worth more than a tenth of what I owe on it!” or “Ha ha! Our cornerstone industries are stronger than ever!”

  8. Matthew Pouliot - Oct 22, 2013 at 5:53 PM

    Maybe Karma was the Tigers’ baserunning coach?

    • djpostl - Oct 23, 2013 at 4:29 AM

      Or the fact that the bulk of the team had the foot speed of your run-of-the-mill “walker” and half of them have the range of a potted plant

  9. shipitplease - Oct 22, 2013 at 6:09 PM

    Mitch Albom is to sports writers as AIDS is to humans

  10. rbj1 - Oct 22, 2013 at 6:11 PM

    So it had nothing to do with Miggy’s grade 2/3 groin strain?

  11. conjecture101 - Oct 22, 2013 at 6:22 PM

    Craig is so intent on imposing his world views on to everybody else that he loses sight of his own absurd belief; the belief that he would have a job if people weren’t irrationally obsessed with professional baseball. If you’re trying to turn baseball into a mathematical data-collection experiment than keep trying – but know this – if you somehow succeed, you will be out of a job.

    • indaburg - Oct 22, 2013 at 6:52 PM

      The Boston Bruins have a lot of explaining to do then. They were even closer to said events, and they failed. The city’s karma should have carried them to victory, no? I mean, if they were good enough to take it to game 6 of the Stanley Cup Finals, they were good enough to win, no? If something like karma can carry a team to victory, shouldn’t it apply to all sports? Or is this just baseball mysticism? Was it too soon after the tragedy? Maybe there needs to be a waiting period? Please explain. If it’s not just a team outplaying another team, I want to know.

      • conjecture101 - Oct 22, 2013 at 7:22 PM

        Nothing you wrote has anything to do with my comment, so I’m really not sure why it was directed at me.

      • indaburg - Oct 22, 2013 at 7:34 PM

        I’ll say it another way.

        Your comment strongly implies that you disagree with Craig’s opinion that karma helped the Red Sox. How exactly did karma help the Boston Red Sox win? Craig never said baseball is just an advanced statistical mathematical simulation. To suggest though that something as mystical as karma had something to do with the Red Sox winning–I don’t know. Seems a bit odd to me. I would give full credit to a fine team.

      • conjecture101 - Oct 22, 2013 at 7:42 PM

        I never intended to imply that karma made the Red Sox win. My intention was to point out that alot of irrational beliefs are what generate income and revenue for Major League Baseball and other sports – and as result – allow platforms such as hardballtalk to exist and earn revenue. Craig has a history of commentary about how irrational people are about sports – whether it be kids idolizing players or grown men basing their emotional well being on the outcome of games. The ultimate point is that Baseball needs those things to earn money.

      • churchoftheperpetuallyoutraged - Oct 22, 2013 at 8:44 PM

        The ultimate point is that Baseball needs those things to earn money.

        How about marketing the actual game and not the [false] narratives? And any comment about Albom should have an automatic insert about how he’s a fraud of the highest order in his profession.

    • cktai - Oct 22, 2013 at 10:14 PM

      His beliefs are so irrational that they were actually true?

    • brewcrewfan54 - Oct 23, 2013 at 1:37 AM

      My guess would be that Mr Calcaterra would still be a lawyer if he didn’t realize he could make a living blogging about baseball to people who soak it up as you and I both do. That or he would be something different if je hated lawyering. Either way you tried to make a point with a shitty effort. Maybe next time.

      • conjecture101 - Oct 23, 2013 at 9:44 AM

        Actually it was a fair point. I get that Craig is talented enough to make a living elsewhere, but when it comes to this job, it would not exist if it weren’t for a lot of the stuff he criticizes. If you can’t comprehend that point than it doesn’t make my effort poor, it makes your reading comprehension level poor.

  12. indaburg - Oct 22, 2013 at 6:45 PM

    The Tigers were simply beaten by a faster, more defensive, more opportunistic team with a finer bullpen. and — and this is important — better karma. You didn’t realize until you got to Fenway and saw the B Strong carved into the outfield grass and hanging on the Green Monster wall, how much the Boston Marathon bombings six months ago gave unity and purpose to this team and city, kind of like the New Orleans Saints and Hurricane Katrina or the New York Yankees and 9/11.

    There. Fixed it.

    • stex52 - Oct 23, 2013 at 8:17 AM

      Indy! Don’t kill the narrative!! It may be weak and phony, but aren’t most foundation myths? What will we sing to our grandchildren around the campfire as we eat our wooly mammoth chops? :-)

      • indaburg - Oct 23, 2013 at 9:17 AM

        Ha! I’m getting jaded as I get older. We’ll sing the truth.

      • stex52 - Oct 23, 2013 at 9:40 AM

        It’ll never fly in 21st century America.

  13. frank35sox - Oct 22, 2013 at 6:59 PM

    Ok, so Mitch is an illegitimate sportswriter. About as illegitimate as one who would waste their time writing about Mitch.

    • nategearhart - Oct 23, 2013 at 10:57 AM

      Oh no, he’s so much worse.

      http://www.aolnews.com/2010/07/23/award-for-mitch-albom-ignites-media-melee/

  14. j0esixpack - Oct 22, 2013 at 7:05 PM

    It’s certainly helped rally the fans – and may give a boost to the players – but these Red Sox are having fun and playing with personal pride. It’s great to see!

  15. jhaegs - Oct 22, 2013 at 8:55 PM

    Another stupid article by CC. I can actually tell which ones he writes just by looking at the titles. He should be a writer for the National Inquirer…

    • addictedzone - Oct 23, 2013 at 8:07 AM

      Inquiring minds want to know when it changed its name from the National National Enquirer.

  16. chill1184 - Oct 22, 2013 at 9:04 PM

    If karma wills teams from basement to champion than I would like to know when do the Mets and the Cubs get their respective turns. One would think that enough crap has happened to the Mets since 1986 to warrant a karmic payout and likewise for the Cubs since 1907

    • stex52 - Oct 23, 2013 at 8:27 AM

      This thought from an Astros fan. In my opinion the Mets are still paying back the karma debt they built up in 1986. They probably will be until about 2250. :-)

  17. jlovenotjlo - Oct 22, 2013 at 9:18 PM

    “Two Jerks Bomb Boston Marathon, Enable Red Sox to Win AL Pennant”

    Yea that just doesn’t make sense

    • brewcrewfan54 - Oct 23, 2013 at 1:52 AM

      This is pretty much the comment that should make Albom erase his whole column. Mayb rethink most of the crap he writes. I’m so tired of him.

  18. jrobitaille23 - Oct 22, 2013 at 11:34 PM

    Craig, honestly could you sound like a bigger d bag? Your articles are laughable. You always seem to be on the wrong side of every issue you write about and you have such a holier than thou attitude. Why do you feel compelled to defend PED users, to call out fellow journalists/bloggers/broadcasters, and espouse on the most trivial of subjects as if you are the expert and your opinion is somehow better than others? Yes, I know I am feeding the beast by clicking on your posts and commenting but it’s in the hopes that one day you will look in the mirror and realize clicks does not equate to success nor quality of one’s work. I can’t fathom how you keep this job but maybe it is the click count. Maybe your bosses feel it’s worth the headache as long as you are drawing clicks. I just wish I could ever find what you say enjoyable or find your opinion worthwhile. It’s like you intentionally say the one thing that irks me the most in every article you write. There is no way you are like this in real life so I guess I have to give you kudos for getting those clicks. If you are in fact like this in real life I feel real sorry for you.

    • brewcrewfan54 - Oct 23, 2013 at 12:55 AM

      So you think it is, in fact, karma that has brought the Sox to this point?

    • cur68 - Oct 23, 2013 at 2:02 AM

      It’s a free blog. Don’t like the content? Go somewhere else. Only a moron enables something they don’t like to keep happening. So, if you really hate Craig and his “d bag-ness” and you are not a moron, this should be the last we’ll see of you.

    • stex52 - Oct 23, 2013 at 8:23 AM

      Geez, I hate the way Craig writes these things just to aggravate you. Kind of sounds like it must be your karma. Maybe you had better stop reading them.

  19. brewcrewfan54 - Oct 23, 2013 at 12:50 AM

    I don’t care for the Boston Stong thing again. It was still an absolute tradgedy and I’m not trying to diminish that fact. What I don’t like is the Sox did the Bostron Strong thing in the outfield for a while right after the quit doing it for a while. Then the playoffs start and there it is again. Sounds like they’re marketing in the tradgedy to me. I dislike that. That is, unless they’ve had the Boston Strong thing in the outfield grass ever since and somehow I missed it. If so I’m an ass hole and retract my statement.

    • kate773 - Oct 23, 2013 at 2:52 PM

      I think they’ve had a Boston Strong sign up in the outfield all year, and then re-added it to the field for the playoffs. I could be wrong though, I was too lazy to look it up.

  20. jpm557 - Oct 23, 2013 at 1:09 AM

    I feel like saying the Red Sox beat the Tigers because of karma implies the Tigers did something bad to deserve losing. Right?

    • brewcrewfan54 - Oct 23, 2013 at 1:17 AM

      I gotta agree a little. If Karma was involved with the way Detroit is in such a gigantic pile of economic shit they should probably be winning all tje championships right now. Well played sir.

Leave Comment

You must be logged in to leave a comment. Not a member? Register now!

Featured video

When home-field advantage isn't so
Top 10 MLB Player Searches
  1. T. Lincecum (3160)
  2. M. Bumgarner (2806)
  3. M. Morse (2526)
  4. J. Shields (2273)
  5. Y. Cespedes (2099)
  1. H. Pence (1542)
  2. L. Cain (1511)
  3. T. Ishikawa (1510)
  4. U. Jimenez (1501)
  5. A. Wainwright (1494)