THE SUMMER OF "MORGAN'S
Red Sox debut is a shutout
31, 1988 ... The crushing blow came in the
sixth, when Rich Gedman poked a two-run homer into the right-field
grandstands to complete a 5-0 Red Sox victory over the Milwaukee
Brewers. Before that, there were runs batted in by Larry Parrish, Jim
Rice and another from Gedman.
Each day a
different scenario. Each day the same scenario. The victory, spiced with the
sparkling debut of recently acquired right-hander Mike Boddicker (7 1/3 innings,
8 hits, no runs), gave the Sox an incredible 20 consecutive victories at the
Fens. It also improved their post All-Star mark to 17-1 under manager Joe
Boddicker out there, breaking his curves and picking spots for his fastball,
there was little challenge from the Brewers (1-9 in their last 10 and fading
fast). He had a 1-0 lead after two (Parrish's single driving in Todd Benzinger
from second) and a 3-0 lead by the fourth (Rice banging in Wade Boggs with a
single and Gedman bringing across Mike Greenwell with a sacrifice fly).
Gedman poked his homer off Don August in the sixth, the catcher's first Fenway
homer since July 25, 1987, the lead was up to 5-0. Having not pitched in a week,
and still barely a wrinkle in his home starch whites, Boddicker lasted into the
eighth until Morgan came out with the hook.
Boddicker, to a standing ovation, and in came Bob Stanley, whose resurgence this
year has been nearly as important as acquiring Terminator Lee Smith. The Steamer
pitched out of Boddicker's mild eighth-inning jam and didn't allow the Brewers
even one hit over 1 2/3 innings. In his last 17 appearances, he has gone 3-0
with three saves (none yesterday) and a 1.78 earned run average.
of 33,527 was behind Boddicker from the opening pitch. He allowed only one
runner into scoring position in the first five innings, fanning five in those
frames. He then gave up three hits over the fifth and sixth, only to dance out
of each inning on grounders (12 of 21 outs in seven innings came on the floor).
But, finally, after yielding two more singles in the eighth, the newest hero
headed for the showers.
are now only one victory shy of tying their all-time best Fenway Park winning
streak. They won 21 straight Aug. 11-Sept. 25, 1949, and will have their shot at
that mark when they face the Texas Rangers (the only team to beat them since the
All-Star break) tomorrow night in the Back Bay.
important, the victory kept the Sox only 1 1/2 games back in the AL East. They
may not be the best team in their division yet, but they are playing with a
confidence that many of them believe transcends even 1986, when they won the AL