REVERSING THE CURSE,
& TEK COME TO TOWN
The Red Sox out-last
the Twins in a wild one
August 13, 1998 ... The
Red Sox banged out their 70th win of the season, an 8-7 endurance
test against the Twins at Fenway Park, with the help of 16 hits, a
couple of defensive gems, and even a couple of timely stolen bases.
For a team
in pursuit of a wild-card bid, it doesn't get much wilder than tonight at the
Fens, where the clubs combined for 28 hits, 11 pitchers, and 10 extra-base hits,
including Nomar Garciaparra's game-winning double in the seventh inning that
brought Mo Vaughn lumbering around with the 15th and final run.
the game appeared to be a Sox blowout in the making. A three-run fourth inning,
spiced by Garciaparra's line-drive homer into the screen and a Darren Bragg
squeeze bunt that brought in Mike Stanley soon after a stolen base, put the Sox
in command, 4-0. A little more than an hour had passed in what would become a
3-hour 26-minute crawl before a crowd of 32,801.
was, the game had just begun. The Twins halved the lead in the fifth after
starter Pedro Martinez opened the inning by fanning Todd Walker and getting
Terry Steinbach on a fly to right. Back-to-back singles by David Ortiz and Pat
Meares, followed by an Otis Nixon walk, set the stage for Brent Gates to lash a
two-run single to center. Sox, 4-2.
struggled into the seventh and finally staggered to the showers. The Sox
reasserted themselves in their half of the fifth, adding three runs on four hits
-- including doubles by John Valentin and Vaughn and singles by Garciaparra and
Stanley. Just before Stanley's shot to left, Garciaparra moved to second on the
Sox' second stolen base of the evening. When Garciaparra crossed the plate, the
Sox were in front by five runs, 7-2.
Twins kept bashing, too. They trimmed the lead by a pair in the sixth when Ortiz
delivered a two-run double, then tied it in the seventh when they chased
Martinez. A Gates double followed by a Paul Molitor single sent Martinez to the
showers. After Greg Swindell gave up an infield single, Dennis Eckersley was
rocked for a Marty Cordova two-run double. It was tied, 7-7, and the Eck
eventually picked up the win despite getting torched. That's baseball.
Garciaparra, a combined 6 for 9 on the night with three doubles, a homer, and
four RBIs, rattled Travis Miller for the winning run in the seventh. Vaughn
launched a leadoff double to center, and Garciaparra matched it, drilling a shot
high off the Wall in left-center. It was the star shortstop's 95th RBI of the
year, leaving him only three shy of his 1997 total.
made it stand up with a perfect ninth for his 33d save.