RED SOX SWEEP WAY TO LEAGUE CHAMPIONSHIP; Boston Starters Strangle KC Offense From Start to Finish

October 8—Kauffman Stadium
Boston 5, Kansas City 0
Boston wins championship series 4-0


The Boston starting firm of Martinez, Wood, Young, & Clemens completely dominated Kansas City on the way to a four-game sweep of Kansas City in the Rhubarb championship series. Each man threw a complete game–the Boston bullpen didn’t throw a single pill in the series. The Royals managed one run against Pedro in game one, zero runs against Smoky Joe in game two, three runs against Cy in game three, and were shutout in the fourth game by Roger in perhaps the most dominant of the four starts. Clemens walked just one, whiffed six, gave up five hits, and faced just 31 hitters as the Sox reached the end of the championship expressway.

KC starter Danny Jackson managed to keep the game tied at zero through four strong innings at the start. But in the top of the fifth, Carlton Fisk and Darrell Evans led off with consecutive walks, and series MVP Nomar Garciaparra knocked in Fisk with a single. Jackson then got Bobby Doerr on a fly-out, but Wade Boggs slapped an RBI single and Jackson’s day was done. In came Bud Black, who got two quick outs, but the first one came on a deep sac fly that plated Garciaparra and gave Boston a 3-0 lead.

That was more than enough for the Rocket on this day, but the Sox added on another two runs in the sixth inning on solo dingers from Carl Yastrzemski and Evans.

The Sox outscored the Royals 25-4 in the series. “It’s a little embarrassing,” admitted KC manager Ned Yost after the game. “Obviously we knew the Red Sox presented a tough challenge to our much younger organization, but we beat them a couple of times in the regular season, and we were confident that we could make it a close series. Unfortunately, we just didn’t swing the bats well, and you’ve got to tip your cap to four incredible pitching performances on their side.”

nomahNomar Garciaparra was named series MVP after the game. He batted 6-for-14 in the series with two home runs. He was the only player with at least one hit in all four games and the only player to score at least one run in all four games. In game one, Garciaparra drilled the game-winning runs with a two-run homer, then in game three had a perfect day at the plate with a walk, two singles, and a homer, and in game four knocked in the winning run with an RBI single.

“It was a hell of a season,” beamed Boston skipper Joe Cronin after the game, champagne streaming down his face. “The guys started the year gangbusters. We got out to such a big lead, then got a little banged up and tired, and flagged just a bit in August, but that quickly turned into a wake-up call and we’ve gone out there just knowing we’re going to win ever since. I’ve never seen a club like this one. The coaches and I mostly just filled out the lineup cards, sat back, and watched the winning machine go to work. Just a beautiful season.”

                  R H BB E
BOS 000 032 000 - 5 8  5 0
KC  000 000 000 - 0 5  1 0

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Boston Rides 3 Early Homers To 3-0 Series Lead vs. Kansas City

October 7—Kauffman Stadium
Boston 6, Kansas City 3
Boston leads series 3-0


The series shifted to Kansas City, but the result stayed the same in game three of the best of seven Rhubarb championship series. The Red Sox had the second-best offense in the regular season, but they did not hit a lot of homers–only Minnesota went yard fewer times than Boston–but KC starter Jose Rosado couldn’t keep the Sox in spacious Kauffman Stadium in this game. Jimmie Foxx tagged a two-run shot in the first inning, Nomar Garciaparra went solo boppo in the second, and Tris Speaker took a solo trot in the third inning to put Boston up 4-0.

The Royals had the pleasure of facing the hottest hurler in the galaxy, Cy Young. They actually got to Young better than most teams had managed over the last couple of months, reaching with nine hits and four walks. They chipped away for single runs in the fifth, sixth, and seventh to make the score 5-3. The KC faithful roared as their squad tried to rally in the seventh. The Royals had runners on the corners with one out, but Young calmly induced a double play grounder from Hal McRae.

Number eight hitters Garciaparra and Jose Offerman led their teams with three knocks apiece. Speaker collected a triple to go along with his dinger.

Boston will try for the sweep tomorrow with Roger Clemens starting vs. Danny Jackson.

                  R H BB E
BOS 211 010 001 - 6 6  5 1
KC  000 011 100 - 3 9  4 0

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Boston Bats & Joe Wood Smoke Kansas City in Game 2 Blowout

October 5—Fenway Park
Boston 11, Kansas City 0
Boston leads series 2-0


When the Red Sox are firing on all cylinders, as they were in game two of the Rhubarb championship series, they are a sight to behold. Starter Smoky Joe Wood barely broke a sweat in a two-hit shutout, and the Boston offense punished KC hurlers Kevin Appier, Joakim Soria, and Jeff Montgomery for 11 runs in the first six innings.

apeStarter Appier got out of the first inning unscathed, but everything fell apart for the Royals in the bottom of the second. Carlton Fisk, Fred Lynn, and Nomar Garciaparra started it with successive hits to get Boston on the board 1-0 and load the bases with nobody out. Wade Boggs followed with an RBI walk. Appier then got Tris Speaker on a double play that scored a run and made the score 3-0. With the two outs, Appier needed to stop the bleeding right there, but Ted Williams drew a walk and Jimmie Foxx knocked in another run with a single to make it 4-0. That was it for Appier.

Joakim Soria took over and was not able to end the Boston surge until after Carl Yastrzemski, Fisk, and Lynn all singled in succession and the Red Sox had scored seven runs in the disastrous frame.

The rest of the game felt like a mere formality, with the Royals never getting anything  going against a wicked Wood, and the Sox tacking on four more runs.

Every Red Sox batter got at least one hit and scored at least one run. Boggs and Williams both reached safely in four of five plate appearances.

The teams take a travel day tomorrow before playing game three on October 7.



                   R  H BB E
KC  000 000 000 -  0  2  4 0
BOS 070 130 00x - 11 18  3 0

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Continue reading “Boston Bats & Joe Wood Smoke Kansas City in Game 2 Blowout”

Martinez, Garciaparra Lead Boston To Championship Series Game 1 Win Over Kansas City

October 4—Fenway Park
Boston 3, Kansas City 1
Boston leads series 1-0

Red Sox Spring Training

The heavily-favored Boston Red Sox won the opening game of the Rhubarb Championship Series against the Kansas City Royals in a low-scoring affair. Kansas City starter Bret Saberhagen was reasonably sharp, particularly against the usual on-base machines Wade Boggs, Tris Speaker, and Ted Williams that top Boston’s lineup. But the Boston lineup is deep, and Jimmie Foxx and Carl Yastrzemski opened the bottom of the second with back-to-back doubles to give Boston a 1-0 lead.

Pedro Martinez was fired up and on his game. He did get himself into trouble a couple of times, but buckled down and powered his way out of the jams unscathed. KC’s top five hitters were largely MIA and went a combined 2-for-20 with two singles and no walks in the game. The first three hitters did hit the ball hard in the top of the first, but all three line drives screamed straight towards second baseman Bobby Doerr’s waiting glove. Bizarrely, all three were ballpark single chances, usually a good result for the batter since Fenway has a 1-16 rating for singles and just 17-20 for line-outs. It’s rare enough to land on a ballpark single chance three times in a row, but then to also roll between 17-20 each time is nuts.

The bottom four hitters in Kansas City’s relatively shallow lineup managed to cause some stress for Martinez. In the top of the third, Jose Offerman led off with a walk and Alcides Escobar slapped a single that pushed Offerman to second. Willie Wilson followed them up with a single that couldn’t get Offerman home, but loaded the bases with no outs and the Royals, 2nd, 3rd, and 4th hitters due up. John Mayberry struck out. George Brett lifted a middle-depth fly-out to left field, and Royals third base coach Mike Jirschele, respecting Carl Yastrzemski’s strong arm, elected to not send Offerman home on a tag. Martinez finished off the Houdini act by getting Willie Aikens to ground out softly to first.

Offerman and Escobar again set the Royals up for a rally in the fifth inning, leading off with a single and a walk respectively, but Wilson, Mayberry, and Brett all flew out without advancing either runner.

In the bottom of the fifth, Nomar Garciaparra made the Fenway rooters roar with a two-run blast over the monster.

The Royals got on the board in the top of the sixth with a Hal McRae single and Darrell Porter triple, but that one run was all they could manage against Pedro’s complete game.

Starters Smoky Joe Wood and Kevin Appier are slated to face off tomorrow in game two.

                  R H BB E
KC  000 001 000 - 1 7  2 0
BOS 010 020 00x - 3 5  3 0

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Final Pitching Leaders

    LEAGUE                    ORIGINAL DIV              EXPANSION DIV

    ERA - min. 162 IP

 1. J. Santana-MN   2.51   1. J. Santana-MN   2.51   1. Nolan Ryan-TEX  3.29
 2. W. Johnson-MN   2.79   2. W. Johnson-MN   2.79   2. J. Moyer-SEA    3.31
 3. P. Martinez-BOS 2.94   3. P. Martinez-BOS 2.94   3. J. Weaver-ANA   3.46
 4. Ed Walsh-CHI    3.03   4. Ed Walsh-CHI    3.03   4. R. Johnson-SEA  3.78
 5. S.J. Wood-BOS   3.05   5. S.J. Wood-BOS   3.05   5. Yu Darvish-TEX  3.83
 6. Lefty Grove-OAK 3.19   6. Lefty Grove-OAK 3.19   6. B Saberhagen-KC 3.88
 7. Cy Young-BOS    3.25   7. Cy Young-BOS    3.25   7. Roy Oswalt-HOU  3.91
 8. R. Clemens-BOS  3.26   8. R. Clemens-BOS  3.26   8. Jose Rosado-KC  4.09
 9. Nolan Ryan-TEX  3.29   9. Jack Powell-BAL 3.39   9. K. Escobar-ANA  4.20
10. J. Moyer-SEA    3.31  10. Vean Gregg-CLE  3.58  10. D. Jackson-KC   4.22

    total runs allowed per nine innings - min. 162 IP

 1. J. Santana-MN   2.70   1. J. Santana-MN   2.70   1. J. Weaver-ANA   3.46
 2. W. Johnson-MN   3.52   2. W. Johnson-MN   3.52   2. Jamie Moyer-SEA 3.78    
 3. Cy Young-BOS    3.58   3. Cy Young-BOS    3.58   3. R. Johnson-SEA  3.86
 4. Jack Powell-BAL 3.62   4. Jack Powell-BAL 3.62   4. Nolan Ryan-TEX  3.29
 5. J. Weaver-ANA   3.65   5. Ed Walsh-CHI    3.73   5. Yu Darvish-TEX  3.93
 6. Ed Walsh-CHI    3.73   6. S.J. Wood-BOS   3.84   6. B Saberhagen-KC 4.22
 7. Jamie Moyer-SEA 3.78   7. R. Waddell-OAK  4.06   7. Kevin Appier-KC 4.50
 8. S.J. Wood-BOS   3.84   8. C. Bender-OAK   4.13   8. K. Escobar-ANA  4.52
 9. R. Johnson-SEA  3.86   9. Lefty Grove-OAK 4.47   9. F. Garcia-SEA   4.53
10. Nolan Ryan-TEX  3.90  10. Barry Zito-OAK  4.47  10. Roy Oswalt-HOU  4.54

    fielder independent pitching - min. 162 IP

 1. J. Santana-MN   2.86      same as league         1. Kevin Appier-KC 3.80
 2. W. Johnson-MN   2.95                             2. K. Escobar-ANA  3.99
 3. Ed Walsh-CHI    3.01                             3. R. Halladay-TOR 4.02
 4. R. Waddell-OAK  3.12                             4. M. Cuellar-HOU  4.03
 5. Cy Young-BOS    3.14                             5. Jose Rosado-KC  4.07
 6. C. Bender-OAK   3.21                             6. Nolan Ryan-HOU  4.09
 7. P. Martinez-BOS 3.28                             7. Jamie Moyer-SEA 4.22
 8. Lefty Grove-OAK 3.37                             8. Roy Oswalt-HOU  4.30
 9. S.J. Wood-BOS   3.48                             9. J. Weaver-ANA   4.32
10. Vean Gregg-CLE  3.59                            10. F Hernandez-SEA 4.49

    earned runs saved above average

 1. W. Johnson-MN     45   1. W. Johnson-MN     45   1. J. Moyer-SEA      21
 2. J. Santana-MN     37   2. J. Santana-MN     37   2. A. Rhodes-SEA     21  
 3. Ed Walsh-CHI      36   3. Ed Walsh-CHI      36   3. Nolan Ryan-TEX    20
 4. Cy Young-BOS      29   4. Cy Young-BOS      29   4. T. Percival-ANA   17
 5. Lefty Grove-OAK   27   5. Lefty Grove-OAK   27   5. Tom Henke-TOR     16
 6. P. Martinez-BOS   27   6. P. Martinez-BOS   27   6. J. Weaver-ANA     16
 7. S.J. Wood-BOS     26   7. S.J. Wood-BOS     26   7. Greg Holland-KC   15
 8. R. Clemens-BOS    25   8. R. Clemens-BOS    25   8. Octavio Dotel-HOU 15 
 9. Jack Powell-BAL   22   9. Jack Powell-BAL   22   9. F. Rodriguez-ANA  14
10. J. Moyer-SEA      21  10. Joe Nathan-MN     19  10. Wade Davis-KC     13

Continue reading “Final Pitching Leaders”

Final Batting Leaders


    weighted runs created

 1. Lou Gehrig-NY    148   1. Lou Gehrig-NY    148   1. Craig Biggio-HOU 115
 2. Wade Boggs-BOS   123   2. Wade Boggs-BOS   123   2. L. Berkman-HOU   114
 3. Joe Jackson-CLE  122   3. Joe Jackson-CLE  122   3. C. Delgado-TOR   107
 4. Ted Williams-BOS 120   4. Ted Williams-BOS 120   4. Jeff Bagwell-HOU 106
 5. Babe Ruth-NY     119   5. Babe Ruth-NY     119   5. Alvin Davis-SEA  102
 6. Mickey Mantle-NY 119   6. Mickey Mantle-NY 119   6. Mike Trout-ANA    99
 7. E. Collins-OAK   118   7. E. Collins-OAK   118   7. E. Martinez-SEA   94
 8. K. Singleton-BAL 117   8. K. Singleton-BAL 117   8. Ken Griffey-SEA   92
 9. Craig Biggio-HOU 115   9. Tris Speaker-BOS 110   9. Fred McGriff-TOR  91
10. L. Berkman-HOU   114  10. R. Henderson-OAK 110  10. John Mayberry-KC  90


 1. Lou Gehrig-NY   .420   1. Lou Gehrig-NY   .420   1. L. Berkman-HOU  .396
 2. Singleton-BAL   .408   2. Singleton-BAL   .408   2. C. Delgado-TOR  .381
 3. Joe Jackson-CHI .404   3. Joe Jackson-CHI .404   3. J. Mayberry-KC  .379
 4. Babe Ruth-NY    .400   4. Babe Ruth-NY    .400   4. F. McGriff-TOR  .379
 5. Joe Jackson-CLE .400   5. Joe Jackson-CLE .400   5. Alvin Davis-SEA .367
 6. C. Fisk-BOS     .398   6. C. Fisk-BOS     .398   6. C. Biggio-HOU   .366
 7. L. Berkman-HOU  .396   7. Norm Cash-DET   .388   7. J. Bagwell-HOU  .362
 8. Norm Cash-DET   .388   8. T. Williams-BOS .386   8. Mike Trout-ANA  .361
 9. T. Williams-BOS .386   9. Wade Boggs-BOS  .383   9. Ken Griffey-SEA .361
10. Wade Boggs-BOS  .383  10. Ty Cobb-DET     .380  10. Bob Watson-HOU  .352

    home runs

 1. Lou Gehrig-NY     40   1. Lou Gehrig-NY     40   1. A. Rodriguez-TEX  39
 2. A. Rodriguez-TEX  39   2. Babe Ruth-NY      36   2. Lance Berkman-HOU 36
 3. Lance Berkman-HOU 36   3. Jim Thome-CLE     32   3. Jeff Bagwell-HOU  32
 3. Babe Ruth-NY      36   4. F. Robinson-BAL   31   4. Moises Alou-HOU   31
 5. Jeff Bagwell-HOU  32   5. Mickey Mantle-NY  29   5. A. Rodriguez-SEA  30
 5. Jim Thome-CLE     32   6. A. Rodriguez-NY   26   6. Shawn Green-TOR   28
 7. Moises Alou-Hou   31   7. Jimmie Foxx-OAK   25   6. Ken Griffey-SEA   28
 7. F. Robinson-BAL   31   8. Frank Thomas-CHI  24   6. Troy Glaus-ANA    28
 9. A. Rodriguez-SEA  30   9. C. Keller-NY      23   9. C. Delgado-TOR    27
10. Mickey Mantle-NY  29   9. R. Jackson-OAK    23  10. D. Tartabull-KC   26

    on-base percentage

 1. K Singleton-BAL .442   same as league            1. C. Biggio-HOU   .383
 2. T. Williams-BOS .419                             2. J. Mayberry-KC  .381
 3. Wade Boggs-BOS  .419                             3. C. Delgado-TOR  .375
 4. Joe Jackson-CLE .408                             4. L. Berkman-HOU  .375
 5. E. Collins-OAK  .396                             5. E. Martinez-SEA .369
 6. Joe Jackson-CHI .396                             6. F. McGriff-TOR  .368
 7. Yastrzemski-BOS .395                             7. Alvin Davis-SEA .367
 8. Lou Gehrig-NY   .393                             8. Mike Trout-ANA  .360
 9. Ty Cobb-DET     .390                             9. Bob Watson-HOU  .356
10. Norm Cash-DET   .388                            10. J. Bagwell-HOU  .354

Continue reading “Final Batting Leaders”

Mantle & Young Named Players of September


Mickey Mantle finished off a strong season with his best month of the year in September. He and teammate Lou Gehrig were neck-and-neck as the most productive hitters over the final month, and the Mick provides much more defensive value and speed than Gehrig.

Mantle just hit and hit all month, but his finest day came on September 11 with the Yankees hosting the Blue Jays. Mantle rapped five hits, two of which were homers. Here is his September by the numbers:

140 19 42 29  7  0  6 .347 .436 .554 .429  29

Full slate of players of the month this season:

April: Tris Speaker, BOS
May: Lou Gehrig, NY
June: Craig Biggio, HOU
July: Frank Thomas, CHI
August: Ty Cobb, DET
September: Mickey Mantle, NY

Cy Young became the only player to win more than one player/pitcher of the month honor. Having just won the prize in August, Young reeled off another remarkable month in September. It started with a relative down game for Young on September 4th. He had pitched his team to a 2-1 lead against Cleveland in the ninth inning, but the Naps got to him for two runs in that final frame to beat him. It was the only one of his final 10 starts in which he gave up more than one run.

Then on the 9th, Young was masterful for 10 full innings and gave up just one run in a victory over Detroit. It might have been his finest game of the year. He walked one and struck out six.

Next up, Young swatted down Chicago on the 14th with a dominant nine inning, one run game. Same nine innings and one run against Anaheim on the 19th. On the 25th, Young again only yielded one, though this time in a scandalously short seven inning start that still ended in a win over New York. In his final regular season start of the year, he returned to his usual nine innings/one run dominance, this time winning over Oakland.

53  8  7  1  9 30  1.19 1.36 2.53   15

All the pitchers of the month this year:

April: Johan Santana, MN
May: Pedro Martinez, BOS
June: Ed Walsh, CHI
July: Smoky Joe Wood, BOS
August: Cy Young, BOS
September: Cy Young, BOS