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Former Red Sox OF Mike Cameron sees parallels between 2018 team, 116-win 2001 Mariners

Vincent Gallo
August 09, 2018 - 12:52 pm

Former Red Sox outfielder, and member of the 116-win Mariners, Mike Cameron is seeing shades of the 2001 regular season juggernaut in this year’s Red Sox squad.

Speaking to NBC Sports Boston’s Evan Drellich, Cameron has been impressed with the 2018 Sox resilience in addition to their skill, and on Wednesday, referenced their Tuesday extra inning win against the Blue Jays.

“I was watching [the Red Sox play in] Toronto,” he said. “I’m like, ‘Oh [expletive]. They’re back in the game, are you serious?’”

Cameron, who was 28 at the time, remembers the 2001 Mariners pulling off similar comebacks and described how it helped his team’s confidence in addition to being well aware of what the Mariners had a chance of pulling off.

“For me, I think I thought about [116 wins] a lot, because we won a lot of games in the seventh, eighth, ninth inning,” said Cameron. “So along with the jubilation of winning a game it’s like [a sense of], ‘This is amazing, this is unbelievable – we’re really tough to beat everyday’ … I always thought … ‘This is like playing 12U where you’re dominating everybody.”

Cameron is also among believers who see the Red Sox having a shot at the Mariners’ 116-win mark.

“It’s just a matter if they decide to play as much going into the stretch,” he said. “That’s probably the biggest thing … It seems like everybody they plug in every day, they’re getting the job done. They’re dominant.”

Cameron knows all about running into the Yankees in the playoffs. The Yankees, who eventually lost to the Diamondbacks in the World Series, eliminated his Mariners early in the 2001 ALDS. Cameron remembers Derek Jeter giving a forewarning prior to the postseason.

“Jeter was like, ‘You guys are playing good man. We’ll see you in October,’” Cameron recalled. “… and it just made me think, ‘Damn – it still goes through New York, you know?’”

Despite being without the guidance of Jeter, the Yankees will have a bit of extra motivation in a playoff matchup against this Red Sox team. Like the Mariners, the Red Sox would run into them in the ALDS if they secure the best record in the American League and the Yankees win the play-in Wild Card game.

Proceeding a franchise trend of knocking out a +100 win juggernaut in the first round at the expense of their hated rival would be a feat for a young Yankee team to hang their hat on in future matchups. But Cameron thinks the Red Sox have something the 2001 Mariners were without.

“They have youth in the lineup and they have power pitching,” he explained. “We didn’t really have power pitching on our squad. That bodes well in October … [power pitching is] definitely something special.”

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