1991 BOSTON RED SOX ...
Change was already in the air at Fenway Park. Mrs. Yawkey, like her late husband tried to solve a myriad of problems by throwing money in that direction. Prior to the season, the Red Sox cut ties with hitting coach Walt Hriniak, Dwight Evans and Marty Barrett. Mike Boddicker became a free agent and signed with the Royals. Lou Gorman jumped into the free agent market and signed Jack Clark, Larry Andersen, Danny Darwin and Matt Young for big salaries, which in turn forced them to pay very high salaries to Mike Greenwell and Tom Brunansky.
In January, Roger Clemens added to his erratic reputation and was accused of attacking an off-duty police officer during an apparent melee also involving his brother Randy at Bayou Mama's Swamp Bar, a Houston dance club. A grand jury charged Clemens with a misdemeanor instead of a felony for his role. The decision meant he would not serve time. Later, Commissioner Fay Vincent upheld Clemens' five-game suspension and $10,000 fine that had been levied by American League president Bobby Brown as a result of the Red Sox pitcher's behavior during Game 4 of last October's ALCS in Oakland, when Clemens bumped umpire Jim Evans and threatened umpire Terry Cooney. And even with this on his record, the Sox signed him to $21 1/2 million deal for five years, making the Sox the highest payroll in baseball.
Jack Clark was the DH and hit 28 home runs, but the offense was not up to usual Red Sox standards, finishing seventh in the American League in runs scored. It’s not that there weren’t some good hitters in the Red Sox lineup. There was still Wade Boggs at third base, who churned out a .421 on-base percentage. Carlos Quintana has a .375 OBP at first base, while left fielder Mike Greenwell and second baseman Jody Reed kept themselves on base consistently. But the lack of power from anyone other than Clark prevented the whole from being as good as the sum of the parts.
And the pitching certainly wasn’t going to cover for anything. The rotation came around to Roger Clemens every fifth day and the Rocket covered for a lot of ills, winning 18 games with a 2.62 ERA and logging 271 innings and winning his third Cy Young Award. But everything behind him, from Mike Gardiner to Tom Bolton to Matt Young to Kevin Morton to Danny Darwin, was a train wreck.
Joe Morgan was able to get good work from Greg Harris, who both started and relieved and finished with a 3.85 ERA, and closer Jeff Reardon saved 40 games. But finding pitching on the days of a non-Clemens start was always a roll of the dice.
On Opening Day, Jack Clark hit a grand slam homer and the Sox beat Toronto, 6-2 at Skydome. They lost the next three games, before beating the Indians at Fenway Park, 4-0, in a Clemens three-hit shutout on April 13th. Clemens struck out 11 and walked none for the second straight game. He was 68-18 after Red Sox losses. He went to three-ball counts only three times during the game. The Sox broke it open on Carlos Quintana's two-run single to right field in the sixth inning.
The raw conditions of a New England April turned to sweet, warm Fenway winds on the 16th. With a .214 team batting average so far, the warmth produced three solo home runs and a 5-2 victory over the Kansas City Royals. It was the first win by a Red Sox starter (Danny Darwin) other than Clemens.
On April 18th Clemens (3-0) gave up three singles, walked one and struck out 10, defeating Bret Saberhagen and the Royals, 1-0. In his three starts so far, he had pitched 25 innings, during which he had allowed one run and 12 hits, walked one and struck out 27. His ERA was 0.36.
A 6-4 victory over the Toronto Blue Jays on April 22nd was as close to the "perfect win" as any triumph in recent Red Sox times. They had three home runs from Tom Brunansky, Wade Boggs and Ellis Burks and came back from a 4-1 deficit. Their much-maligned bullpen pitched five scoreless innings and Jeff Reardon earned his fourth save in four chances. But Danny Darwin, who got touched for four runs on five hits, left the game complaining of tenderness in the back of his right shoulder and ended up on the DL.
The Red Sox still got off to a nice start. It was testimony to Roger Clemens' dominance, that he could hurl seven shutout innings without his best stuff in a 3-0 victory against Toronto on April 23rd. After allowing just one walk in his first 25 innings, Clemens issued four but still extended to 30 his run of consecutive scoreless innings, a streak that began in the second inning Opening Day.
After taking two of three in Kansas City, in Minnesota, Carlos Quintana crushed one in the eighth inning, a three-run, 430-foot shot off a section of bleachers in center field, leading the Red Sox to a 7-5 victory over the Twins at the Metrodome on April 30th. The Sox (11-7) finished the month in first place by one half game over the Blue Jays.
Roger Clemens pitched a five-hit, complete-game, 7-2 victory over the White Sox on May 3rd. His return after his five game suspension was void of hassles with umpire Terry Cooney, with whom he had engaged in the notorious playoff confrontation. He had amassed a 5-0 start with a 0.66 ERA. He struck out seven and walked just two. He rebounded from first-inning difficulty to pitch eight subsequent shutout innings.
The next night, led by 6 2/3 innings from the Sox’ second-best pitcher at the time, Tom Bolton, the Sox beat the White Sox, 4-0. Jack Clark's average dipped to .209 and the Sox offense still had not produced, but has scored enough runs to compliment the starting rotation, which was 11-4 with a 2.55 ERA and had allowed a .205 average.
The club ended the trip, on which it won six of eight, by sweeping a three-game series in Chicago for the first time since August 1968. Kevin Romine and Mike Marshall starred in a 9-1 victory over the White Sox, on May 5th, at the new Comiskey Park.
Jack Clark was a hero again, at least for one night, on May 9th. The boos turned to cheers when he helped complete the Sox comeback from a 4-0 deficit with a bases-loaded walk against Texas reliever Goose Gossage, breaking a 4-4 tie in the bottom of the seventh inning. The Sox went on to defeat the Texas Rangers, 8-4, with a five-run seventh for a rare late-game come-from-behind victory.
The Sox were rescued just in time on May 11th by first baseman Carlos Quintana (.323 BA) who had three hits and Jeff Reardon, who retired the last four batters for his 10th save in 10 opportunities.
Since the first week of the season, the Sox had been the hottest team in baseball. They had won four straight, 16 of the last 20 and were 7-1 in May. The starters pitched at least six innings in 23 of 27 starts, posting a record of 15-5 with a 2.75 ERA. The club's 18-9 start was the best since 1982, when the Red Sox opened the season 21-9. They led the AL East by two games.
Tom Bolton was 4-0 after defeating the Chicago White Sox, 4-1, on May 14th, with an eight-hitter for 8 1/3 innings. Along with Clemens, Bolton had become almost a sure thing every time he pitched. Together, they were 10-0.
Danny Darwin returned on May 22nd and gave up six hits but walked no one and struck out four, as the Sox swept the Brewers at Fenway.
It was a stretch just before and immediately after Memorial Day that the Sox started to unravel. Jack Clark had been in a slump for most of the season and Matt Young couldn’t throw strikes.
Young was trying to pitch around the sometimes dangerous Pete Incaviglia so he could face Travis Fryman on the May 25th, 3-2 loss, in Detroit. When Young walked Incaviglia to load the bases, Joe Morgan came racing out to get him. Young, whose ERA rose to 3.73 after his 2 2/3-inning stint, wasn't too happy to get the hook, gave Morgan some choice words and tossed his glove in the dugout in disgust.
On May 28th, Mel Hall launched a three run walk-off homer of closer Jeff Reardon, as the Red Sox had lost four of their last five on the road trip. Sox pitchers had allowed 13 home runs in the last four games. The next night, however, Hall came up against Roger Clemens to a rousing ovation. Clemens whipped a fastball close enough to Hall's head so that everyone caught the meaning, then struck him out. It was one of those moments that often occur when Clemens is on and everything is right with the Sox' world. After two conspicuous losses, for one night, the Rocket returned to his devastating normalcy, allowing a run and three hits, walking one and striking out eight over eight innings in a 6-2 victory over the Yankees.
But on Matt Young’s next start, he walked five, in less than two innings, in a 9-3 punishment at the hands of the Orioles at Fenway Park. Then after the Sox had lost Opening Day starting shortstop, Tim Naehring, to back problems, his replacement, Luis Rivera, badly sprained his shoulder in the game. Starting pitcher, Dana Kiecker, was the next to go on the DL with an inflamed muscle in his throwing arm.
The Sox dropped three of four to the last-place Orioles over Memorial Day weekend, and fell deeper into the slump that started when they were swept by Texas two weeks before. The Sox were 6-11 since May 15th and had lost eight of their last eleven, but the club had been artificially propped up by the equally slumping Blue Jays. The race in the AL East all but came to a standstill. The Sox were percentage points ahead of Toronto in first place, for six of the last seven days as they headed off to the west coast.
After a 3-0 loss to the Angels on the first game of the road trip, the Red Sox, losers of 9 of 11 road games were now just three games over .500. Toronto had a shaky half-game lead as the Red Sox. And the Sox certainly didn't have to worry about being unseated from second place, with Detroit and Milwaukee also losing, in a division that is become more and more mediocre.
Matt Young received a cortisone shot in his arm after having control problems and ended up on the DL with a tear in his rotator cuff. Signed to a three-year deal, Young had started 10 times this season, compiling a 3-3 record with a 4.20 earned run average. In 55 2/3 innings, he had walked 37. Young and Danny Darwin, the other free agent pitcher the Sox signed last winter, had not yet proven a sound investment. Darwin had been as ineffective as Young, compiling a 2-2 record with a 5.17 ERA.
After losing two of three to the Angels and falling further behind the Jays, the Sox had to do something, so they called up Phil Plantier from Pawtucket. Jack Clark was benched and Plantier became the DH.
Roger Clemens (8-3) returned to the Oakland Coliseum mound on June 8th, for the first time since his world unraveled in five minutes during Game 4 of last year's playoffs. Clemens held the A's to two hits over eight innings and retired 20 of the last 22 batters he faced. The victory was the second straight for the Sox (28-25), who look infinitely better this morning than when they arrived here two days ago. With the two wins, the club had taken a series at the Coliseum for the first time since May 1986. The Sox had not won consecutive games in 18 days.
They went 4-5 on their west coast trip, 1 1/2 games behind the Jays as they headed back to Fenway. Led by Clemens' pitching, Jack Clark's two-run homer and a seven-run seventh inning that included key strokes by Mike Greenwell (two RBIs) and Ellis Burks (three-run homer), the Sox roared back for a 9-4 win over the Angels against the Angels on June 14th.
The Sox mounted another comeback vs the Oakland A's on June 20th. The 8-7 win, was sparked by a timely 12-hit attack that featured Tom Brunansky's bat. The right fielder had three hits, knocked in three runs and scored the winner on Tony Pena's single to right, which capped a two-run rally in the eighth.
Joe Morgan had been frustrated with the club's inconsistent offense. The club had been held to three runs or fewer for the 33 times in 69 games this season. The Sox were 8-25 in those games. And so, Mo Vaughn was brought up from Pawtucket June 27th. With Ellis Burks being the only black player on the team, Mo was aware of the situation and wore #42 as a tribute to Jackie Robinson. He went hitless in his debut as the Sox lost to the Yankees, 8-0. Although he played relatively well, he had trouble adjusting to big league pitching.
On June 30th, Mo hit his first home run and almost became the second man to hit the ball out of Memorial Stadium in Baltimore. The man who did it was Frank Robinson, who, on May 8, 1966, in the second game of a doubleheader, hit a ball off Luis Tiant, that soared over the left-field bleachers and finally rolled to a stop in the back of the parking lot, where it was chased down by kids 540 feet from home plate.
Leading off the fifth inning against Orioles right-hander, Jeff Robinson, Vaughn unloaded on a fastball and sent it curling like some kind of flaming projectile toward the back of the right-field bleachers, where it hit a fan in the 38th row of Section 30, five rows from the top of the stadium. But the Sox lost the game, 6-4, for nine losses in their last thirteen games, falling 4 1/2 games behind the Blue Jays.
Roger Clemens (10-5 with a 2.08 ERA) stopped the skid at County Stadium with a strong seven-inning stint as he and Jeff Gray combined on a 6-0, five-hit shutout of the Milwaukee Brewers. Vaughn belted a two-run homer and knocked in four runs.
Wade Boggs was elected to start in the All-Star Game for the sixth consecutive year. The Sox third baseman was hitting .308, .038 below his career average of .346 coming into this season. Clemens and Jeff Reardon were selected by AL All Star manager, Tony La Russa, to join Boggs.
A Sox' 7-4 victory over the Tigers at Fenway Park on July 6th, was punctuated by a bench-clearing brawl that erupted when Clemens hit John Shelby in the ribs with a 95 mph fastball. Clemens collected himself after being roughed up a bit in the brawl and held the Tigers at bay for the next six innings with help from some good defense.
In May, Tom Bolton had a 4-1 record and a 1.90 ERA. But his May statistics were nothing but a distant reminder of what once was. His ERA ballooned up to 4.62 after his July 7th loss to Detroit. He had given up 37 earned runs in 46 innings (7.24 ERA) since then. Danny Darwin was then placed on the disabled list for the second time this season, because of inflammation and fluid buildup near his rotator cuff.
Going into the All Star break, the Sox struggled, as Darwin, Matt Young, Dana Kiecker and Mike Gardiner had been injured, while Sox bats had blown hot and cold. Meanwhile, the Blue Jays had won 15 of their last 18 games before the break and had a 5 1/2 game over the Sox in the AL East.
After the break, things continued to get worse. On July 13th, behind the five-hit pitching of Jack Morris and Rick Aguilera, the Twins made it three straight and defeated the Sox, 3-1, at the Metrodome. Using a lineup that included Carlos Quintana as the first baseman, Mo Vaughn as the DH and Jack Clark on the bench, the Sox could do little against the veteran Morris.
Joe Morgan was not to blame for the way the Sox had been playing. In the space of six weeks, they transformed themselves from "the most talented roster Boston has had since 1975 or 1978" into a pack of pathetic quitters who had a lack of guts and heart. There were not enough starters on the mound. There was Roger Clemens, but everyone else was either hurt or incompetent. The hitters had left more men on base than the population of Greenfield. On the bright side, Mo Vaughn had at least one RBI in 10 of the 15 games he'd started. He was 9 for 19 (.474) with 11 RBIs with runners in scoring position.
On July 16th, Greg Harris pitched a gem and left with a seven-inning shutout. Jeff Gray and Jeff Reardon followed Harris to the mound and preserved a 2-0 victory against the White Sox. Harris was nearly flawless. He threw a pitch to strike out Carlton Fisk in the second that looked like it was lopsided. He completely baffled menacing designated hitter, Frank Thomas, who had homered twice the night before, striking him out twice in a three at-bat collar and preventing him from even hitting the ball out of the infield.
Then Sox checked in with one of their more absurd losses this season, a 3-2, 11-inning downer to the Twins on July 19th. It ended finally when Steve Lyons sprinted in from left field for a shallow fly and slid just before the ball fell to earth directly behind him, allowing the winning run to score. The Sox were thwarted when no fewer than three players who were hit by injuries - Mike Greenwell (ankle), Wade Boggs (ankle) and Carlos Quintana (foot). Jeff Reardon blew a ninth-inning lead, giving up a pinch-hit home run to tie the game.
The Sox had lost nine straight at home, going winless since before the All-Star break (July 6th), and were 10 games out. It was the worst Red Sox victory drought at Fenway Park since 1927. Then, all of a sudden, the Sox picked themselves up as July ended.
Down 2-1 on July 30th, they scored 10 runs in the third inning on their way to an 11-6 victory. The 10 runs tied the major league high for the season, achieved twice before. It marked their biggest inning since a 12-run outburst in a 24-5 victory over the Cleveland Indians on August 21, 1986. The Sox scored 10 or more runs in an inning for the 24th time, extending its modern major league record. Carlos Quintana knocked a grand slam, and a two run double in the same inning, off Oil Can Boyd, who was now with the Texas Rangers. which got the inning rolling. It was his first in the majors, and third by the Red Sox this year (but first at home). He became the 11th player to share the major league record of six RBIs in an inning.
But also, a frightening reality moment occurred, when reliever Jeff Gray suffered a stroke in the Sox club house. He had just finished a session in the weight room when he had a seizure while sitting in a chair in front of his locker. Witnesses reported that he had numbness in his right arm and leg and a slurring of his speech, prompting club officials to rush him to Beth Israel Hospital. He never played baseball again.
The next night, Jack Clark finally lived up to his billing and more, by bashing three homers, scoring four runs and driving in six, capped by a 14th-inning blast that gave the Sox an 11-10 win on July 31st against the As. This was Fenway-ball, featuring comebacks upon comebacks. It was also as inspired a Red Sox win as you would witness this season. Up, 4-1. Down, 5-4. Down, 10-9. Tied, 10-10. They won it on their last at-bat as Clark's homer, his 17th, came on a 2-2 count and went over everything, ending a game that lasted 5 hours 1 minute.
The Sox took 2 of 3 from the first place Jays, as August started, but lost the next three straight in Kansas City, to fall 11 1/2 games behind.
It was now that the Sox began to make one final push for their beloved manager and looked like they might cook up some more of "Morgan’s Magic".
They headed up to Toronto. Carlos Quintana hit two home runs in Friday night’s opener, four other players had three hits and the Red Sox won 12-7. Greg Harris came out on Saturday and threw a four-hitter, while Jack Clark and catcher Tony Pena drove in three runs apiece to win 7-1. Mike Greenwell delivered a four-hit game on Sunday, with Quintana and centerfielder Ellis Burks getting three hits apiece in a 9-6 win.
Roger Clemens pitched Monday’s wraparound finale and struggled, but Clark, Greenwell and Burks had his back. Batting in the 4-5-6 spots in the order, the trio combined to go 9/15 with ten RBIs and lead an 11-8 win. The Sox had scored 39 runs and 67 hits, during the four-game sweep, 27 with two out, and batted .401. The Red Sox were 7 1/2 games out, but they were breathing new life.
And they didn’t slow down. In Cleveland, they split a doubleheader on August 13th, as Quintana's pinch-hit, ninth-inning two-run double off reliever Jesse Orosco won the second game, after losing the opener. The charge continued with a riveting 2-1 win the next day. Ellis Burks was cranking up his game, drilling a two-run triple in the sixth inning, in a 6-2 victory in the fourth game, as they then headed home.
Against the Royals, at Fenway in a 3-2 Sox win, on August 16th, Roger Clemens and Bret Saberhagen, the two youngest pitchers ever to win the Cy Young Award twice, dueled to a seven-inning draw, each allowing five hits and a run on a sacrifice fly, before Phil Plantier hit his first major league homer, and it lifted the Red Sox to a dramatic 3-2 win at electrically charged Fenway Park. The Sox climbed back to .500 and had picked up seven games on the Blue Jays and trailed free-falling Toronto by 4 1/2 games.
Two days later, Jack Clark's two-run blast as well as clutch hitting by Luis Rivera and Steve Lyons added up to a 5-1 victory over the Royals. In winning two of three, the Sox beat the Royals 7 of 12, for their first season-series win against Kansas City since 1979.
On August 21st, Wade Boggs ripped a two-strike pitch into the right-field bullpen in the bottom of the ninth to give the Red Sox a dramatic, 5-4, Game 2 victory and a doubleheader sweep of the Cleveland Indians at Fenway. The next night, August 22nd, Jody Reed kept the Red Sox hopes alive in the ninth with a fluke single, then drove home the winning run in the 10th on a single to left. The sox had won 12 of their last 14 games and cut the lead to 3 1/2 games. The Red Sox were certainly on a red-hot roll.
As they headed out to the west coast, Mike Greenwell revealed that he had a hyperextended right elbow to go along with the cartilage damage in his right knee. Greenwell suffered a loss of power over the past two years, and much of it was attributed to his assorted injuries.
There was dissension in the club house that surfaced in Anaheim. Mo Vaughn and Greenwell engaged in a shouting match that escalated into a fight near the batting cage about an hour before the first game with the California Angels. The fight occurred in full view of fans who arrived early to watch batting practice and instead saw a boxing match. The shouting began when they were teasing each other. It escalated into exchanging blows, which left Greenwell with two marks on the right side of his face and one on the left side. Apparently, Vaughn kept chiding Greenwell, and Greenwell thought the rookie was carrying things a little too far. There is protocol between rookies and veterans.
After the Sox lost three straight to the Angels, in Oakland, Roger Clemens defeated the A's, 3-0, on a three-hitter, striking out 10 and walking only one. Clemens didn't want Jack Clark's 22nd home run to be wasted. Not when Clark suffered what may be a small tear of his right calf muscle on the at-bat and had to trot slowly around the bases and walked the final 90 feet to the plate. Clemens improved to 13-8, while his ERA went from 2.70 to 2.59.
But their momentum briefly slowed, as their play so far on this crucial road trip had been strange and often lackluster. The club lost three games in the standings after being swept by last-place California, then taking two of three from the A's, a series that was tainted by a brutal 9-3 loss in the final game.
But the Red Sox regained steam. The club had a convincing 13-2 victory and a three game sweep of the Mariners that was impressive on many levels, especially the way in which the Sox absolutely savaged Randy Johnson. Tom Brunansky had the biggest hit, a titanic grand slam in the second off Johnson's replacement, righthander Scott Bankhead. The Sox led, 10-1, after two; Wade Boggs went 4 for 6 and Brunansky had six RBIs.
The Sox ended the road trip with a winning record, and were basically where they had started it, five games behind the Jays.
At home, against Seattle, the Sox took four straight. On September 5th, the Sox were one out from falling 6 1/2 games behind with 29 to play. But Phil Plantier drilled a game-tying double with two out in the ninth. Then John Marzano's single landed in left field for the dramatic conclusion to a game that often seemed to stretch the envelope of believability. On July 17th, the Sox had won just one game in their final at-bat. They had since done it eight times, including this 4-3 win over the Mariners at Fenway Park on Marzano's pinch-hit single with one out in the 10th inning.
A day after the Red Sox won in extra innings, they mounted a 6-5 comeback victory over the Mariners. On September 6th, the Sox trailed, 5-3, but with five innings left, they mounted a resurgent offense paced by Tony Pena's three hits and two RBIs, including the game-winning seventh-inning single.
In the third game, Mike Greenwell had six RBIs on a vicious two-run homer in the first, a three-run double that rattled off the doorway near the left-field line in the second and a run-scoring double in the fifth, leading the Sox to an 11-10 victory.
Led by Phil Plantier, who drove in five runs and pushed his average to .379, the Sox beat on the Mariners. 17-6, in the final game, as if they were still an expansion team. The Sox had not scored 17 runs in a game at Fenway since 1954. In the four-game sweep, Boston scored 38 runs with 50 hits.
The thrashing of Seattle culminated a four-game sweep. Sure, it was great that the Red Sox won their fifth straight, and eighth of nine. But they still had a 5 1/2-game deficit over Toronto, who also kept winning.
In Detroit, on September 10th, Roger Clemens (15-8) retired the first 19 Tigers and walked the 20th before hanging a slider to Alan Trammell, who singled with one out in the seventh inning. Clemens' unsuccessful bid for a perfect game and his first no-hitter, dominated what proved to be an important 4-0 win over the Tigers, as the Sox moved within four games of Toronto with 24 to play.
Before a 7-2 win over the Yankees, on September 12th, Ellis Burks was a late scratch because of back problems that were serious enough for him to be examined by the Yankee physician.
The next night, it was a 5-4 win over the Yankees. The Red Sox seized a two-run lead after Tom Brunansky got his third hit and John Marzano was hit on the right foot by a pitch. Bob Zupcic sacrificed the runners into scoring position. The first major decision of the game was placed squarely on Joe Morgan's shoulders. Should he let lefthanded-hitting Scott Cooper, who had gone 0 for 2 with a strikeout and grounder, bat? The answer was no. Morgan summoned Phil Plantier to step in with his uppercut swing in hopes of at least a fly ball to get the tying run in. Plantier went a step further with a 2-2 slider glided into the zone, which he lofted six rows into the Yankee Stadium third deck.
It was more evidence of "Morgan's Magic". The Sox were back within 3 1/2 of Toronto, after taking the series from the Yankees in the Bronx.
With three weeks to go in the season, the Red Sox met another struggling AL East foe in the Baltimore Orioles. On September 17th, Jack Clark stepped up against Orioles starter Jose Mesa in the sixth inning and lofted a fly ball to right field. It kept drifting in a stiff wind, over to Pesky's Pole, just a few rows to the fair side of the pole. Clark's 23rd home run would not go down as his most prodigious blast, but it did break a tie and give the Sox a 4-3 victory.
The next game brought the Sox closer to the Blue Jays, in a 7-5 win over the Orioles. Phil Plantier went 2 for 4 and contributed to two early rallies. Jack Clark followed up his 304-foot homer with a hellacious line drive to dead center, that Joe Morgan called the longest line drive into the bleachers he'd ever seen. The Sox took the series and cut the Toronto lead to 2 1/2 games on September 18th.
Next, Roger Clemens, three-hit the Yankees, 2-0, on September 20th, and was downright nasty. Jody Reed, who was in the leadoff spot for the ailing Boggs, went 3 for 4, including an RBI double and a solo homer off the left-field foul pole.
The next game against the Yankees, the Sox had 14 hits and three stolen bases, which accompanied a four-hitter by Joe Hesketh on September 21st. The Sox won 12-1. There were back-to-back steals by Steve Lyons, who stole second and third. Then Jack Clark launched an opposite-field shot, his 25th. Phil Plantier belted a bomb over the right-field bullpen on a 3-2 count in the sixth, accounting for the ninth run. In the eighth, he was the front man in a back-to-back homer tandem that included Bob Zupcic's first major league home run.
Since August 9th, the Sox were 31-10. An 11 1/2-game deficit, 44 days ago, had been nearly wiped out. They had moved within 1/2 games of the AL East lead with 14 games to play.
But that was as close as they got. They lost the last game of the series to the Yankees and then lost 2 of 3 in Baltimore, falling 2 1/2 games behind with 10 games left.
On the season’s next to last weekend, the Red Sox went to Milwaukee. It was here that the dream died. Kevin Morton pitched on Friday and gave up six runs in the sixth inning of a 7-5 loss. Brewers’ starter Jamie Navarro threw a four-hitter at the Sox on Saturday. The Sox led on Sunday, 4-3, in the eighth, but Jeff Reardon blew a save and they lost 5-4 to fall 4 1/2 games back. Even though the Sox salvaged the Monday finale, it was all but over.
As if to underscore the point, the Red Sox mailed it in and lost five of their last six, finishing 84-78, 7 games behind the Blue Jays in the AL East.
The Sox ownership felt that the team failed them because of the high salaries they were willing to pay out with nothing retuned. They couldn’t fire the players, so they fired Joe Morgan two days after the season ended.
|04/08/1991||1-0||1st||-||at Toronto Blue Jays||W||6-2||Roger Clemens||1-0|
|04/09/1991||1-1||3rd||-1/2||at Toronto Blue Jays||L||4-3||Greg Harris||0-1|
|04/10/1991||1-2||5th||-1 1/2||at Toronto Blue Jays||L||5-3||Jeff Gray||0-1|
|04/11/1991||1-3||6th||-2||Cleveland Indians||L||6-4||Danny Darwin||0-1|
|04/13/1991||2-3||4th||-1 1/2||Cleveland Indians||W||4-0||Roger Clemens||2-0|
|04/14/1991||2-4||6th||-2 1/2||Cleveland Indians||L||6-0||Greg Harris||0-2|
|04/15/1991||2-5||6th||-3 1/2||Cleveland Indians||L||1-0||Dennis Lamp||0-1|
|04/16/1991||3-5||6th||-2 1/2||Kansas City Royals||W||5-2||Danny Darwin||1-1|
|04/17/1991||4-5||5th||-1 1/2||Kansas City Royals||W||6-2||Tom Bolton||1-0|
|04/18/1991||5-5||4th||-1||Kansas City Royals||W||1-0||Roger Clemens||3-0|
|04/19/1991||5-5||3rd||-1 1/2||at Cleveland Indians||pp|
|04/20/1991||6-5||3rd||-1 1/2||at Cleveland Indians||W||2-1||Greg Harris||1-2|
|04/21/1991||6-5||2nd||-1||at Cleveland Indians||pp|
|04/22/1991||7-5||1st||-||Toronto Blue Jays||W||6-4||Dennis Lamp||1-1|
|04/23/1991||8-5||1st||+1||Toronto Blue Jays||W||3-0||Roger Clemens||4-0|
|04/24/1991||8-6||1st||-||Toronto Blue Jays||L||6-1||Matt Young||0-1|
|04/25/1991||8-6||1st||-1/2||at Pawtucket Red Sox||L||7-4|
|04/26/1991||8-7||2nd||-1 1/2||at Kansas City Royals||L||5-3||Tony Fossas||0-1|
|04/27/1991||9-7||2nd||-1/2||at Kansas City Royals||W||6-4||Tom Bolton||2-0|
|04/28/1991||10-7||2nd||-1/2||at Kansas City Royals||W||2-1||Dana Kiecker||1-0|
|04/30/1991||11-7||1st||+1/2||at Minnesota Twins||W||7-5||Jeff Gray||1-1|
|05/01/1991||11-8||1st||+1/2||at Minnesota Twins||L||1-0||Jeff Gray||1-2|
|05/03/1991||12-8||1st||-||at Chicago White Sox||W||7-2||Roger Clemens||5-0|
|05/04/1991||13-8||1st||+1||at Chicago White Sox||W||4-0||Tom Bolton||3-0|
|05/05/1991||14-8||1st||+1||at Chicago White Sox||W||9-1||Matt Young||1-1|
|05/07/1991||14-9||1st||+1/2||Minnesota Twins||L||9-3||Greg Harris||1-3|
|05/08/1991||15-9||1st||+1/2||Minnesota Twins||W||8-3||Roger Clemens||6-0|
|05/09/1991||16-9||1st||+1/2||Texas Rangers||W||8-4||Dennis Lamp||2-1|
|05/10/1991||17-9||1st||+1 1/2||Texas Rangers||W||5-3||Matt Young||2-1|
|05/11/1991||18-9||1st||+2||Texas Rangers||W||5-4||Dana Kiecker||2-0|
|05/12/1991||18-10||1st||+1||Chicago White Sox||L||12-5||Greg Harris||1-4|
|05/13/1991||18-11||1st||-||Chicago White Sox||L||4-3||Jeff Gray||1-3|
|05/14/1991||19-11||1st||-||Chicago White Sox||W||4-1||Tom Bolton||4-0|
|05/15/1991||20-11||1st||+1||Chicago White Sox||W||9-6||Joe Hesketh||1-0|
|05/17/1991||20-12||1st||+1||at Texas Rangers||L||6-4||Greg Harris||1-5|
|05/18/1991||20-13||1st||-||at Texas Rangers||L||13-5||Roger Clemens||6-1|
|05/19/1991||20-14||1st||-||at Texas Rangers||L||12-4||Tom Bolton||4-1|
|05/20/1991||21-14||1st||-||Milwaukee Brewers||W||3-0||Matt Young||3-1|
|05/21/1991||22-14||1st||-||Milwaukee Brewers||W||10-6||Joe Hesketh||2-0|
|05/22/1991||23-14||1st||+1||Milwaukee Brewers||W||4-0||Danny Darwin||2-1|
|05/23/1991||23-15||1st||+1/2||at Detroit Tigers||L||5-3||Roger Clemens||6-2|
|05/24/1991||24-15||1st||+1/2||at Detroit Tigers||W||10-9||Tom Bolton||5-1|
|05/25/1991||24-16||1st||+1/2||at Detroit Tigers||L||3-2||Matt Young||3-1|
|05/26/1991||24-17||1st||+1/2||at Detroit Tigers||L||9-4||Dana Kiecker||2-1|
|05/27/1991||24-18||1st||-||at New York Yankees||L||6-5||Jeff Reardon||0-1|
|05/28/1991||25-18||1st||+1||at New York Yankees||W||6-2||Roger Clemens||7-2|
|05/29/1991||25-19||1st||-||at New York Yankees||L||7-0||Tom Bolton||5-2|
|05/30/1991||25-20||1st||-||Baltimore Orioles||L||9-3||Matt Young||3-3|
|05/31/1991||26-20||1st||-||Baltimore Orioles||W||7-2||Mike Gardiner||1-0|
|06/01/1991||26-21||1st||-||Baltimore Orioles||L||3-1||Danny Darwin||2-2|
|06/02/1991||26-22||1st||-||Baltimore Orioles||L||5-1||Roger Clemens||7-3|
|06/04/1991||26-23||2nd||-1/2||at California Angels||L||3-0||Tom Bolton||5-3|
|06/05/1991||26-24||2nd||-1 1/2||at California Angels||L||7-2||Mike Gardiner||1-1|
|06/06/1991||26-25||2nd||-1 1/2||at California Angels||L||3-2||Danny Darwin||2-3|
|06/07/1991||27-25||2nd||-1/2||at Oakland Athletics||W||2-1||Greg Harris||2-5|
|06/08/1991||28-25||2nd||-1/2||at Oakland Athletics||W||8-1||Roger Clemens||8-3|
|06/09/1991||28-26||2nd||-1 1/2||at Oakland Athletics||L||8-0||Bob Welch||6-3|
|06/10/1991||29-26||2nd||-1||at Seattle Mariners||W||6-2||Wes Gardiner||2-1|
|06/11/1991||30-26||1st||-||at Seattle Mariners||W||8-5||Danny Darwin||3-3|
|06/12/1991||30-27||2nd||-1||at Seattle Mariners||L||5-3||Greg Harris||2-6|
|06/14/1991||31-27||2nd||-1 1/2||California Angels||W||9-4||Roger Clemens||9-3|
|06/15/1991||32-27||2nd||-1/2||California Angels||W||13-3||Mike Gardiner||3-1|
|06/16/1991||33-27||1st||+1/2||California Angels||W||2-0||Tom Bolton||6-4|
|06/17/1991||33-28||1st||-||California Angels||L||4-2||Greg Harris||2-7|
|06/18/1991||33-29||1st||-||Seattle Mariners||L||2-1||Jeff Reardon||0-2|
|06/19/1991||33-30||1st||-||Seattle Mariners||L||4-3||Roger Clemens||9-4|
|06/20/1991||34-30||1st||-||Oakland Athletics||W||8-7||Jeff Gray||2-3|
|06/21/1991||35-30||1st||-||Oakland Athletics||W||3-2||Tom Bolton||7-4|
|06/22/1991||36-30||1st||-||Oakland Athletics||W||9-5||Greg Harris||3-7|
|06/23/1991||36-31||2nd||-1||Oakland Athletics||L||4-2||Danny Darwin||3-4|
|06/25/1991||36-32||2nd||-1 1/2||New York Yankees||L||6-4||Roger Clemens||9-5|
|06/26/1991||36-33||2nd||-2 1/2||New York Yankees||L||5-1||Mike Gardiner||3-2|
|06/27/1991||36-34||2nd||-3 1/2||New York Yankees||L||8-0||Tom Bolton||7-5|
|06/28/1991||37-34||2nd||-2 1/2||at Baltimore Orioles||W||9-3||Greg Harris||4-7|
|06/29/1991||37-35||2nd||-3 1/2||at Baltimore Orioles||L||7-3||Danny Darwin||3-5|
|06/30/1991||37-36||2nd||-4 1/2||at Baltimore Orioles||L||6-4||Joe Hesketh||2-1|
|07/01/1991||38-36||2nd||-4 1/2||at Milwaukee Brewers||W||6-0||Roger Clemens||10-5|
|07/02/1991||39-36||2nd||-4 1/2||at Milwaukee Brewers||W||14-4||Dennis Lamp||3-1|
|07/03/1991||40-36||2nd||-4 1/2||at Milwaukee Brewers||W||5-3||Greg Harris||5-7|
|07/04/1991||40-37||2nd||-4 1/2||Detroit Tigers||L||6-1||Danny Darwin||3-6|
|07/05/1991||41-37||2nd||-4 1/2||Detroit Tigers||W||10-1||Kevin Morton||1-0|
|07/06/1991||42-37||2nd||-4 1/2||Detroit Tigers||W||7-4||Roger Clemens||11-5|
|07/07/1991||42-38||2nd||-5 1/2||Detroit Tigers||L||7-6||Tom Bolton||7-6|
|07/08/1990||All Star Game Break|
|07/11/1991||42-39||2nd||-6 1/2||at Minnesota Twins||L||7-3||Greg Harris||5-8|
|07/12/1991||42-40||2nd||-7 1/2||at Minnesota Twins||L||5-4||Roger Clemens||11-6|
|07/13/1991||42-41||3rd||-8 1/2||at Minnesota Twins||L||3-1||Kevin Morton||1-1|
|07/14/1991||43-41||2nd||-7 1/2||at Minnesota Twins||W||5-3||Joe Hesketh||3-1|
|07/15/1991||43-42||3rd||-8 1/2||at Chicago White Sox||L||7-1||Mike Gardiner||3-3|
|07/16/1991||44-42||3rd||-7 1/2||at Chicago White Sox||W||2-0||Greg Harris||5-5|
|07/17/1991||45-42||3rd||-7||at Chicago White Sox||W||4-2||Tony Fossas||1-1|
|07/18/1991||45-43||3rd||-8||Minnesota Twins||L||11-3||Kevin Morton||1-2|
|07/19/1991||45-44||3rd||-9||Minnesota Twins||L||3-2||Greg Harris||6-9|
|07/20/1991||45-45||4th||-9||Minnesota Twins||L||5-0||Mike Gardiner||3-4|
|07/21/1991||45-46||4th||-9||Minnesota Twins||L||14-1||Tom Bolton||7-7|
|07/22/1991||45-47||4th||-9 1/2||at Texas Rangers||L||2-1||Roger Clemens||11-7|
|07/23/1991||45-48||4th||-9 1/2||at Texas Rangers||L||5-4||Greg Harris||6-10|
|07/24/1991||46-48||4th||-9 1/2||at Texas Rangers||W||2-1||Joe Hesketh||4-1|
|07/26/1991||46-48||4th||-9 1/2||Chicago White Sox||pp|
|07/27/1991||46-49||4th||-9 1/2||Chicago White Sox||L||10-8||Dana Kiecker||2-2|
|07/28/1991||46-51||4th||-10||Chicago White Sox||L||5-2||Greg Harris||6-11|
|07/29/1991||46-52||4th||-10||Texas Rangers||L||7-2||Joe Hesketh||4-2|
|07/30/1991||47-52||4th||-9||Texas Rangers||W||11-6||Kevin Morton||2-2|
|07/31/1991||48-52||3rd||-9||Oakland Athletics||W||11-10||Greg Harris||7-11|
|08/01/1991||48-53||4th||-10||Oakland Athletics||L||4-2||Dennis Lamp||3-2|
|08/02/1991||49-53||3rd||-9||Toronto Blue Jays||W||5-3||Roger Clemens||12-7|
|08/03/1991||50-53||3rd||-8||Toronto Blue Jays||W||4-1||Joe Hesketh||5-2|
|08/04/1991||50-54||3rd||-9||Toronto Blue Jays||L||2-1||Dennis Lamp||3-3|
|08/05/1991||50-55||3rd||-9 1/2||at Kansas City Royals||L||5-3||Tony Fossas||1-2|
|08/06/1991||50-56||3rd||-10 1/2||at Kansas City Royals||L||6-0||Mike Gardiner||3-6|
|08/07/1991||50-57||3rd||-11 1/2||at Kansas City Royals||L||2-0||Roger Clemens||12-8|
|08/09/1991||51-57||3rd||-10||at Toronto Blue Jays||W||12-7||Joe Hesketh||6-2|
|08/10/1991||52-57||3rd||-9||at Toronto Blue Jays||W||7-1||Greg Harris||8-11|
|08/11/1991||53-57||3rd||-8||at Toronto Blue Jays||W||9-6||Mike Gardiner||4-6|
|08/12/1991||54-57||3rd||-7||at Toronto Blue Jays||W||11-8||Dennis Lamp||4-3|
|08/13/1991||54-58||3rd||-7||at Cleveland Indians||L||8-6||Dana Kiecker||2-3|
|55-58||3rd||-6 1/2||W||7-5||Tony Fossas||2-2|
|08/14/1991||56-58||3rd||-5 1/2||at Cleveland Indians||W||2-1||Joe Hesketh||7-2|
|08/15/1991||57-58||3rd||-5 1/2||at Cleveland Indians||W||6-2||Mike Gardiner||5-6|
|08/16/1991||58-58||3rd||-4 1/2||Kansas City Royals||W||3-2||Tony Fossas||3-2|
|08/17/1991||58-59||3rd||-5 1/2||Kansas City Royals||L||4-3||Jeff Reardon||0-3|
|08/18/1991||59-59||3rd||-5 1/2||Kansas City Royals||W||5-1||Kevin Morton||3-2|
|08/19/1991||59-59||3rd||-5 1/2||Cleveland Indians||pp|
|08/21/1991||60-59||3rd||-5||Cleveland Indians||W||13-5||Joe Hesketh||8-2|
|61-59||3rd||-4 1/2||W||5-4||Greg Harris||9-11|
|08/22/1991||62-59||3rd||-3 1/2||Cleveland Indians||W||7-6||Greg Harris||10-11|
|08/23/1991||62-60||3rd||-4 1/2||at California Angels||L||4-1||Matt Young||3-4|
|08/24/1991||62-61||3rd||-4 1/2||at California Angels||L||1-0||Kevin Morton||3-3|
|08/25/1991||62-62||3rd||-5 1/2||at California Angels||L||9-5||Joe Hesketh||8-3|
|08/26/1991||63-62||3rd||-5 1/2||at Oakland Athletics||W||3-0||Roger Clemens||13-8|
|08/27/1991||64-62||3rd||-5 1/2||at Oakland Athletics||W||6-4||Mike Gardiner||6-6|
|08/28/1991||64-63||3rd||-6 1/2||at Oakland Athletics||L||9-3||Matt Young||3-5|
|08/30/1991||65-63||3rd||-6||at Seattle Mariners||W||3-2||Joe Hesketh||9-3|
|08/31/1991||66-63||3rd||-6||at Seattle Mariners||W||4-1||Roger Clemens||14-8|
|09/01/1991||67-63||3rd||-5||at Seattle Mariners||W||13-2||Kevin Morton||4-3|
|09/03/1991||67-64||3rd||-5 1/2||California Angels||L||2-0||Mike Gardiner||6-7|
|09/04/1991||68-64||3rd||-5 1/2||California Angels||W||2-0||Joe Hesketh||10-3|
|09/05/1991||69-64||3rd||-5 1/2||Seattle Mariners||W||4-3||Jeff Reardon||1-3|
|09/06/1991||70-64||3rd||-5 1/2||Seattle Mariners||W||6-5||Dennis Lamp||5-3|
|09/07/1991||71-64||3rd||-5 1/2||Seattle Mariners||W||11-10||Tom Bolton||8-7|
|09/08/1991||72-64||2nd||-5 1/2||Seattle Mariners||W||17-6||Mike Gardiner||7-7|
|09/09/1991||73-64||2nd||-5||at Cleveland Indians||W||4-3||Greg Harris||11-11|
|09/10/1991||74-64||2nd||-4||at Detroit Tigers||W||4-0||Roger Clemens||15-8|
|09/11/1991||74-65||2nd||-4||at Detroit Tigers||L||8-2||Matt Young||3-6|
|09/12/1991||75-65||2nd||-3 1/2||at New York Yankees||W||7-2||Kevin Morton||5-3|
|09/13/1991||76-65||2nd||-3 1/2||at New York Yankees||W||5-4||Mike Gardiner||8-7|
|09/14/1991||76-66||2nd||-4 1/2||at New York Yankees||L||3-1||Joe Hesketh||10-4|
|09/15/1991||77-66||2nd||-3 1/2||at New York Yankees||W||5-4||Roger Clemens||16-8|
|09/16/1991||77-67||2nd||-3 1/2||Baltimore Orioles||L||9-2||Tom Bolton||8-8|
|09/17/1991||78-67||2nd||-2 1/2||Baltimore Orioles||W||4-3||Kevin Morton||6-3|
|09/18/1991||79-67||2nd||-2 1/2||Baltimore Orioles||W||7-5||Mike Gardiner||9-7|
|09/20/1991||80-67||2nd||-1 1/2||New York Yankees||W||2-0||Roger Clemens||17-8|
|09/21/1991||81-67||2nd||-1/2||New York Yankees||W||12-1||Joe Hesketh||11-4|
|09/22/1991||81-68||2nd||-1 1/2||New York Yankees||L||7-5||Matt Young||3-7|
|09/23/1991||81-69||2nd||-1 1/2||at Baltimore Orioles||L||4-3||Mike Gardiner||9-8|
|09/24/1991||81-69||2nd||-2||at Baltimore Orioles||pp|
|09/25/1991||81-69||2nd||-2 1/2||at Baltimore Orioles||pp|
|09/26/1991||82-69||2nd||-2||at Baltimore Orioles||W||2-1||Roger Clemens||18-8|
|82-70||2nd||-2 1/2||L||6-5||Greg Harris||11-12|
|09/27/1991||82-71||2nd||-3 1/2||at Milwaukee Brewers||L||7-5||Kevin Morton||6-4|
|09/28/1991||82-72||2nd||-3 1/2||at Milwaukee Brewers||L||4-1||Mike Gardiner||9-9|
|09/29/1991||82-73||2nd||-4 1/2||at Milwaukee Brewers||L||5-4||Jeff Reardon||1-4|
|09/30/1991||83-73||2nd||-3 1/2||at Milwaukee Brewers||W||9-8||Dennis Lamp||6-3|
|10/01/1991||83-74||2nd||-4 1/2||Detroit Tigers||L||8-5||Roger Clemens||18-9|
|10/02/1991||84-74||2nd||-4 1/2||Detroit Tigers||W||5-3||Joe Hesketh||12-4|
|10/03/1991||84-75||2nd||-5||Detroit Tigers||L||10-5||Kevin Morton||6-5|
|10/04/1991||84-76||2nd||-6||Milwaukee Brewers||L||3-2||Mike Gardiner||9-10|
|10/05/1991||84-77||2nd||-6||Milwaukee Brewers||L||13-4||Tom Bolton||8-9|
|10/06/1991||84-78||2nd||-7||Milwaukee Brewers||L||6-3||Roger Clemens||18-10|
|1991 RED SOX BATTING & PITCHING|