Games like these are appreciated more now. It’s been a while since Pedro Martinez was lighting up Fenway on a regular basis. Looking back years later, I am glad I got to see so many games like this.
The Minnesota Twins were in town to do battle. They brought with them a team including Torii Hunter and, prepared to face Pedro Martinez. Like many teams facing Pedro, they should have just stayed in the hotel. Going right to Pedro’s stat line, you can see the results. Pedro went the distance. He only gave up five hits, and didn’t walk a batter. Yup, that’s a 0.55 WHIP for the game. He did give up a run. Unfortunately, two of those five hits came back-to-back to drive a runner home. In those nine innings, Pedro struck out an amazing 12 batters, one of 72 10-strikeout games Pedro threw with the Sox. It’s almost silly to think that Pedro was able to compete with mere mortals on the same diamond. It was such a dominating performance, it’s a shame the Sox gave him 9 runs to work with. But, this was the 2003 Red Sox, so that was often the case. Johnny Damon was there to set the table, even though he only reached base once on this day. The heart of the order was at its best, with the Nomar-Manny-Ortiz threesome instilling fear in many an opposing pitcher. In this game, those three went 5-11 with three RBI and four runs scored. Not a bad day from the big guns. Of course, the rest of the line-up wasn’t too shabby either. The player of the game? I’ll go with David Ortiz. First, look at his position. He was at first base that day. I guess he can play there after all. He also went 2-3 with two doubles, driving in three runs, and scoring one of his own. There’s always one in a blowout, so who stunk up the joint? That day it was Shea Hillenbrand. He went 0-4, and left five men on base. It doesn’t matter, though. The Sox didn’t need any of those runs on a day with Pedro on the mound.
So, the Twins didn’t stand a chance. Pedro was brilliant. The offense was flexing its record setting muscle. It was a great victory.
And the scorecard shows how it happened.