ANDMajor League Baseball has a dream game Tuesday night. At Fenway park, perhaps the venue with the most history left in Las Mayores, a life or death duel will be experienced at 9 tickets (or more) when the Yankees and Red Sox meet in the American League Wild Card Game.
It will be the Sixth time the eternal rivals meet with a chance to end the season of the hated rival and history has left moments for history. The names say it all: Bucky Dent, Bernie Williams, Aaron Boone, Dave Roberts, Davis Ortiz, Curt Schilling, Johnny Damon …
Of the 27 rings owned by the MLB’s most winning franchise, perhaps the most surprising was 1978. With five weeks left in the regular season, the Yankees were 8.5 games behind the Red Sox in the Eastern Division.. It wasn’t like now, that wild card teams passed, but you needed the pennant to play the postseason.
Boston collapsed in September, squandering the lead, but Cleveland did them the favor on the final day of the regular season to beat New York and force party 163 for the divisional crown, at the Fenway, after a flight to define the headquarters.
Hence, baseball history: in the top of the seventh, with a score of 2-0 for Boston, Bucky Dent hit a three-run homer with a one-ball count and two strikes to turn it around. New York added one more in the seventh, another in the ninth with Reggie Jackson’s homer, but Boston cut to 5-4 and the tying player stayed 90 feet from home plate in the ninth.
New York went on to the American League Championship Series, beating the Royals in four to meet with Dodgers, those who beat in six to conquer the ring.
The first series in history came in 1999, five years after MLB expanded the postseason to include wild-card teams. The start of the sport’s greatest rivalry did not disappoint, as Bernie Williams left Boston on the ground with a home run in the 10th. The Yankees would take the series in five games.
In 1919 the last ring of the Red Sox arrived and Boston saw how its eternal rival became the flagship franchise of the diamond, experiencing episode after episode of painful losses.