THE SOX WIN THE AL EAST IN SPECTACULAR
FASHION, BUT THAT'S ABOUT IT ...

Jeff Stone puts the Sox back on top

September 28, 1990 ... The Red Sox beat the Blue Jays, 7-6 at Fenway Park to pull into sole possession of first place in the American League East. They won it on Jeff Stone's single over a drawn-in Toronto outfield.

In a game that changed moods, the Sox entered the bottom of the ninth trailing almost hopelessly, 6-5, but loaded the bases against Toronto closer Tom Henke. Jody Reed walked and was sacrificed to second by Carlos Quintana. Henke walked Wade Boggs. He allowed a sharp single to Ellis Burks. Third base coach Rac Slider held Reed. The bases were loaded for Mike Greenwell, who pounced on a Henke fastball and lined a single to right. Slider, who is known to wave anything and anybody to the plate, held Boggs at third. The game was tied. Stone came up for the first time this season, 3 for 15 with the Sox last September, was the hero.

Oh, how the moods changed. In the top of the ninth, Junior Felix belted a two-run homer for a 6-5 lead. It was a blast into the right-field bleachers off Jeff Gray. The blast sent a stone silence over 35,735, the biggest crowd at the ball yard since April 23, 1978.

Before that, the Red Sox seemed to have things under control, leading, 5-4, entering the ninth. The player considered an American League Most Valuable Player candidate, Kelly Gruber, was valuable to the Red Sox. The All-Star third baseman made back-to-back throwing errors that allowed Greenwell to score the go-ahead run off Duane Ward in the eighth. With one out, Greenwell grounded to Gruber, who threw high over first baseman Fred McGriff's head and was awarded second. Dwight Evans hit another grounder to Gruber, who again threw errantly. Greenwell scored.

All the Red Sox needed to do was hold on. Gray allowed a single to Greg Myers and then threw the first-pitch homer to Felix. Jeff Reardon came in to get the Sox out of further trouble. He did and got the win.

Just as the Red Sox lost their 6 1/2-game lead over the Blue Jays, they also lost their 4-0 lead.

In the sixth, Toronto starter Dave Stieb went 3-2 to Wade Boggs, who smacked a Stieb offering into the Blue Jays' bullpen. Even the crowd was stunned by Boggs' first home run since June 28th. He had missed the last two games with back spasms.

Stieb went from mad to madder when Tony Fernandez booted a Burks grounder. Stieb got the next two outs on liners to center and right, but nobody could come close to catching Tom Brunansky's 406-foot blast to center field, a two-run homer that made it 4-0.

Starter Mike Boddicker pitched six shutout innings and allowed one run in the seventh on a hit and two hit batters, ending Toronto's 33-inning scoring drought against Boston, before Morgan went to Larry Andersen, who had complained, shouted and told the entire free world that his arm was tired and sore.

Three runs later, thanks to a botched double-play ball by Luis Rivera and a grounder that went off Quintana's glove at first, the game was tied. Boddicker hit George Bell and pinch hitter Jim Eppard after a McGriff leadoff single. Red Sox-killer Rance Mulliniks, pinch hitting for catcher Pat Borders, got a ground ball under the glove of Rivera, scoring McGriff. Andersen retired Felix on a force at second base. But Mookie Wilson singled to center, making it 4-3. Fernandez grounded a single off a diving Quintana's glove, scoring the tying run.

 

F   E   N   W   A   Y     P   A   R   K

   

1

2

3

4

5

6

7

8

9

10

 

R

H

E

 
 

TORONTO BLUE JAYS

0

0

0

0

0

0

4

0

2

 

 

6

9

3

 
 

BOSTON RED SOX

1

0

0

0

0

3

0

1

2

 

 

7

11

1

 

 

W-Jeff Reardon (4-3)
L-Tom Henke (2-3)
Attendance - 35,735

 2B-Rivera (Bost)

 HR-Boggs (Bost), Brunansky (Bost), Felix (Tor)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

AB

R

H

AVG

 

 

Jody Reed 2b 4 1 0 .290  

 

Carlos Quintana 1b 4 1 2 .291  

 

Wade Boggs 3b 4 2 2 .305  

 

Ellis Burks cf 5 1 2 .299  

 

Mike Greenwell lf 5 1 2 .295  

 

Dwight Evans dh 4 0 0 .248  

 

Jeff Stone pr 1 0 1 1.00  

 

Tom Brunansky rf 3 1 1 .250  

 

Tony Pena c 4 0 0 .264  

 

Luis Rivera ss 4 0 1 .228  

 

    IP H ER BB SO  

 

Mike Boddicker 6.1 4 4 2 3  

 

Larry Andersen 0.2 2 0 0 0  

 

Jeff Gray 1 3 2 0 0  

 

Jeff Reardon 1 0 0 0 0  

 

 

         

 

 

 

1990 A.L. EAST STANDINGS

 

 

BOSTON RED SOX

85

72

-

 

 

Toronto Blue Jays

84 73 1

 

 

Detroit Tigers

76 81 9

 

 

Baltimore Orioles

73 83 11 1/2

 

 

Cleveland Indians

74 84 11 1/2

 

 

Milwaukee Brewers

71 86 14

 

 

New York Yankees

65 92 20