Minor spoiler alert: If you haven't watched last night's LOST yet, don't watch this spiffy new RedLasso clip. Don't follow the jump, either, to read about the possible significance of yet another Red Sox reference on the show.
In the clip above, Jack picks up a newspaper that contains the headline: "Yankees bludgeon Red Sox in series sweep." Jack then scoffs and mutters, "A-Rod," before placing the paper back down and heading on with his day.
Since it was packaged with other mundane tasks like picking up stray toys and making the morning coffee, it would seem like the look was just a throwaway reference. But considering that the essence of LOST is in the details, we have to assume it's not.
Actually, it could have provided a decent time marker for when last night's "flash-forward" took place. Since the survivors crashed on the island during the 2004 World Series (as we've learned from past Red Sox references), this latest episode had to take place at least starting in 2005.
However, the Yankees did not sweep the Red Sox a single time in '05. For the first clean rout of the Red Sox, you have to jump to 2006, which, of course, was the year the Yankees famously won five straight games in Fenway from Aug. 18-21 to more or less end the Red Sox' hopes of winning the AL East. A-Rod didn't do much in the finale of the series — he went 1-for-4 in a 2-1 New York win pitched by Cory Lidle — but was 7-for-21 over the five games, including three doubles, five runs and five RBI.
The Yankees have swept the Red Sox only one other time since then — Aug. 28-30, 2007 in the Bronx — but Rodriguez didn't have the same kind of series and it doesn't have the same kind of significance of five games at Fenway.
Assuming this wasn't just a small way of Damon Lindelof (a Yankees fan) getting back at fellow producer Carlton Cuse (a Red Sox fan), this would seem to mean that last night's episode took place in Aug. 2006. And while I have no idea how that date fits together with anything just yet — you weren't expecting the secrets of LOST to be divulged in this blog post, were you? — it's probably worth jotting down in your episode notes.
For more LOST on the Stew, check out Dennis Velasco's player-character comparison post from Thursday in which he mocks Jack for never making a move on Kate. (How'd that one turn out?)