Thursday, June 15, 2017

Day 8...Boston

When we were planning the trip, Boston was another city in which it wasn't immediately obvious to us where we would stay. In the months leading up to the trip I was talking through it with my dad and he suggested that we could probably stay with Sean Mahoney, a friend of his from high school. He said he would call and make the arrangements, and next thing you know, we were set. Free lodging was HUGE for two students working on a very limited budget!

We had originally planned on going to the game at Fenway on Tuesday. But with the possibility of Jeff Reardon setting the all-time MLB saves record, we figured we better try to go on Monday to see if we could experience a bit of history. We rolled into Boston late Monday afternoon, and were greeted by the Mahoneys with a gift: They had already purchased tickets for us to go to Tuesday's game.

We were thrilled, but explained to them that if they didn't mind we would plan on going to two games in Boston. We were too close to pass up the possibility of seeing something special! They understood and not an hour after we had arrived at their house, we were out the door on our way to Fenway.

The game was (understandably) sold out, so we would have to buy tickets outside the stadium. Finding two together (at a reasonable price) seemed as though it were going to be very difficult, so we quickly shifted strategies to buying two singles with the intention of just treating them as "standing room only" tickets. This made our task easier, and once inside the stadium we were able to find a place to stand and watch at the back of the lower level, just a little to the first base side of home plate.

Without question, Fenway was one of the crown jewels of our trip. So much history had occurred on that field, and it was immediately recognizable with its iconic 37-foot tall left field wall dubbed "The Green Monster." We settled in and simply soaked in the ambiance.

Through the top of the fifth, both pitchers were rolling. Boston hurler John Dopson was throwing a two-hit shutout, and Yankee veteran hurler Scott Sanderson had yet to allow a hit. Enter Phil Plantier, who would (in 1997) finish up his career with the Cardinals. A compact power hitter, Plantier struggled throughout his career against southpaws, but had pretty good success against right handers. His best season was the following year in 1993, when he hit 34 HR with 100 RBIs for the Padres in just 462 at bats. When Plantier got a hold of one, it could go a long way. On this night, he did just that to lead the bottom of the fifth, hitting home run deep into right-center.

That one run would be all the Red Sox would manage on that night as Sanderson was great, allowing only three hits over eight innings. But Dopson was just as impressive, allowing no runs on just five hits through eight. Throughout the last four innings, the energy withing the ballpark seemed to swell as the reality of history in the making continually came into sharper focus. And as Reardon entered the game to start the ninth, the crowd erupted.

Reardon got Mel Hall to ground out to first. The crowd cheered enthusiastically. He then got Roberto Kelly on a long fly ball to left-center field, and you could feel the excitement in the air. Of course, it's never easy. Needing just one more out for history, and only leading by a single run, Reardon would have to face perhaps the best Yankee hitter of his generation, Don Mattingly. He got one strike and then two, as the anticipation building with each pitch. Every fan in the ballpark was now on their feet. Then with the count 0-2, Mattingly stroked a single between first and second and the air seemingly went out of the ballpark. But almost immediately, the crowd realized that though he hadn't gotten the record-setting save facing Mattingly, he still had the opportunity to do so with Kevin Maas coming to the plate. And do so he did, dramatically striking out Maas swinging on a 1-2 pitch.

As Reardon's teammates carried him off the field, we rejoiced that we had witnessed a record-breaking performance, and looked forward to returning the next night for more baseball at Fenway.

Miles Driven Today: 650
Total Miles Driven: 2,096

Click here to see the next post in this series.
Click here to see the previous post in this series.
Click here to see other posts in this series.


St. Louisan Scott Cooper digs in to face Scott Sanderson...
...and pops out to short.
I always loved the fact that a Citgo sign stood behind the Green Monster. C-IT-GO!
Don Mattingly watches intently on deck as Roberto Kelly awaits the pitch.

As Reardon warmed up in the 9th, I ran down to the front row to take a picture.
The Scoreboard tells us what we already knew: We had just witnessed history!

Eric took this picture. Reardon was kind enough to autograph two 8x10 copies for Eric and me.



Yankees
0
30-31
Lost 1
5th, 8 GB
                1  2  3   4  5  6   7  8  9    R  H  E
                -  -  -   -  -  -   -  -  -    -  -  -
Yankees         0  0  0   0  0  0   0  0  0    0  6  0
Red Sox         0  0  0   0  1  0   0  0  X    1  3  0
W: J Dopson (3-2), L: S Sanderson (4-5), S: J Reardon (15)
Red Sox
1
30-29
Won 1
4th, 7 GB

BATTING
New York Yankees             AB   R   H RBI   BB  SO    BA   OPS  Pit   PO   A  Details
A Stankiewicz SS              3   0   1   0    1   0  .308  .818   15    2   3   2B,CS
M Hall LF                     4   0   0   0    0   2  .247  .700   13    3   0  
R Kelly CF                    4   0   0   0    0   0  .310  .810   15    4   0  
D Mattingly 1B                4   0   2   0    0   0  .252  .717   13    5   0  
K Maas DH                     3   0   1   0    1   1  .282  .854   15    0   0  
D James RF                    3   0   0   0    0   0  .169  .557    5    3   0  
M Nokes C                     3   0   0   0    0   0  .218  .672   12    4   0  
C Hayes 3B                    3   0   1   0    0   0  .263  .686   15    0   2   CS
M Gallego 2B                  3   0   1   0    0   0  .235  .673    8    3   1  

S Sanderson P                                                            0   1
Totals                       30   0   6   0    2   3              111   24   7
BATTING
2B: A Stankiewicz (11, off J Dopson).
TB: D Mattingly 2; A Stankiewicz 2; K Maas; M Gallego; C Hayes.
Team LOB: 5.
With RISP: 0 for 1.
FIELDING
DP: 1. A Stankiewicz-D Mattingly.
BASERUNNING
CS: A Stankiewicz (2, 2nd base by J Dopson/T Pena); C Hayes (2, 2nd base by J Dopson/T Pena).
Boston Red Sox               AB   R   H RBI   BB  SO    BA   OPS  Pit   PO   A  Details
J Reed 2B                     4   0   0   0    0   0  .281  .715   12    3   3   GDP
L Rivera SS                   3   0   0   0    0   1  .258  .647   10    3   1   HBP
W Boggs 3B                    2   0   0   0    1   0  .263  .760    9    2   5  
M Greenwell LF                3   0   0   0    0   0  .241  .605   17    3   1  
E Burks CF                    3   0   0   0    0   1  .252  .745   10    1   0  
P Plantier RF                 3   1   1   1    0   1  .219  .674   10    2   0   HR
  B Zupcic RF                 0   0   0   0    0   0  .286  .735         0   0  
T Brunansky DH                2   0   0   0    1   1  .261  .727   18    0   0  
S Cooper 1B                   3   0   1   0    0   0  .247  .613   13   10   0  
T Pena C                      3   0   1   0    0   0  .223  .546    9    3   2  

J Dopson P                                                               0   0
  J Reardon P                                                            0   0
Totals                       26   1   3   1    2   4              108   27  12
BATTING
HR: P Plantier (4, off S Sanderson; 5th inn, 0 on, 0 outs to Deep LF-CF).
HBP: L Rivera (1, by S Sanderson).
TB: P Plantier 4; T Pena; S Cooper.
GIDP: J Reed (7).
RBI: P Plantier (19).
Team LOB: 4.
With RISP: 0 for 5.
PITCHING
New York Yankees           IP     H   R  ER   BB  SO  HR    ERA   BF  Pit-Str   GB-FB  GmSc  IR-IS
S Sanderson, L (4-5)        8     3   1   1    2   4   1   5.14   29  108-65     6-13    74    -
Totals                      8     3   1   1    2   4   1          29  108-65     6-13         0-0
Boston Red Sox             IP     H   R  ER   BB  SO  HR    ERA   BF  Pit-Str   GB-FB  GmSc  IR-IS
J Dopson, W (3-2)           8     5   0   0    2   2   0   3.32   28   95-59    10-9     72    -
J Reardon, S (15)           1     1   0   0    0   1   0   2.14    4   16-12     1-1          0-0
Totals                      9     6   0   0    2   3   0          32  111-71    11-10         0-0
Balks: None.
WP: None.
IBB: None.
HBP: S Sanderson (1; L Rivera).
OTHER
Umpires: HP - John Shulock, 1B - Larry Young, 2B - Tim Tschida, 3B - Don Denkinger.
Time of Game: 2:17.
Attendance: 33,577.
Field Condition: Unknown.
Weather: 63° F, Wind 15mph in from Rightfield, Cloudy, No Precipitation.

No comments:

Post a Comment