CURSE, PART 1
THE NOMAR ERA BEGINS
Tim Naehring's grand slam propels the Sox
April 13, 1997 ... Despite
the debut of a mascot, Wally the Green Monster, what really excited
the 30,300 fans at Fenway Park today was a third-inning grand slam by
Tim Naehring that broke a 1-1 tie and sent Boston to a 7-1 victory.
Boston batters erupted for 11 hits, and Tom Gordon pitched eight
strong innings, a nice formula for a victory.
mascot received a chilly reception, especially during the seventh-inning
stretch, when it sang "Take Me Out to the Ballgame" with a group of singers. The
Red Sox fans had waited for 10 games for their team to win a laugher, and they
appeared to resent the mascot and the singing group interrupting the pure joy of
such a beating.
rebounded from losses to Randy Johnson and Jeff Fassero to start the home season
by pounding righthander Scott Sanders yesterday. Just as important, Gordon went
those eight innings for his first victory of the seasons and beat the Mariners
for the 11th time in his last 12 decisions against them.
defense was key in the first inning, snuffing out a Seattle bid with a double
play. The offense came through in the bottom half, producing a 1-0 lead on a
leadoff double by Garciaparra and a two-out single by Troy O'Leary, who was
hitting cleanup for the first time in the big leagues.
Seattle tied the game with an unearned run in the second, Boston didn't panic.
In the third, Garciaparra singled with one out and moved to third on a two-out
single by Mo Vaughn (who is still without a home run or an RBI). O'Leary walked,
and Naehring followed with his second career grand slam.
fourth inning, Wil Cordero did become the first Red Sox to hit one of the Coke
bottles, ripping a solo shot on a 3-2 pitch.
hit by a pitch in the fifth, and two batters later he scored on a double by
pinch hitter Mike Stanley. If it was baseball you came to see, the Sox offered a
were just as pleased with the work of Gordon. Early, his breaking ball produced
several key strikeouts. Later, his fastball kicked in. He threw only 94 pitches.