Neil Diamond’s hit single “Sweet Caroline’’ peaked at No. 4 on the Billboard Hot 100 in August 1969. Thirty-three years later, in a 2002 development that seemed both organic and downright inexplicable, it became a nightly singalong tradition in the eighth inning of Red Sox games at Fenway Park. All these years later of its odd ubiquity, and never has it made more sense as an anthem of Boston sports fans than now. Good times never seemed so good? Got that right, Neil. And the good times are poised to last. The Red Sox advanced to the World Series Thursday night with a 4-1 victory over the defending champion Houston Astros. It’s the fourth trip to the Fall Classic for the Red Sox since 2004, when they swept the St. Louis Cardinals to exorcise all ghosts and lift all curses. The Red Sox have been champions in ’04, ’07, and ’13. The change in centuries really has worked out quite well for them. But this latest visit to their sport’s championship round enhances an even more impressive tale: The staggering 21st century success of Boston professional sports. Since the 2001 Patriots ended a 15-year title drought in Boston sports by… Read full this story
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