Game 8 vs Washington Nationals: Matt Stairs

Of the players that have worn the uniform of both the Red Sox and Nationals franchises, Matt Stairs represents a connection between the Red Sox, Nationals, and Expos. The Professional Hitter also wore the uniform of 10 other teams!

The barrel chested definition of a slugger had 265 homers over the course of his 19 year career. Amazingly, Stairs only once spent more than 3 seasons with any club, when he spent 5 with the Oakland Athletics. Matt Stairs's greatest moment came during Game 4 of the 2008 NLCS, when he cranked a pinch hit 2 run home run that put the Phillies on top for good. 

The 2015 Nationals, like the 2008 Phillies, had a lot of pre-season hype touting their rotation and the overall chances that they will reach the 2015 World Series. What nobody is saying, and probably should be, is that Matt Stairs isn't walking through that door. Matt Stairs, the MLB all time leader in pinch hit home runs, is not walking through that door to save the day when the Red Sox press their collective foot against the throat of the Nationals Hopes and Dreams tonight. 

That's because Matt Stairs retired years ago, and is now the head coach of a high school hockey team. The Nats have Bryce Harper and all the rest, but they don't have Matt Stairs. They don't have the beer league-style ballplayer who struck fear into many pitchers he faced. They'll probably lose tonight simply because they don't have that kind of talent sitting on the bench, waiting to save the day. Matt Stairs, a super hero with a bat, instead of a cape.