Thursday, June 17, 2010

Another Top Ten List

When I answered a blogger challenge not too long ago, I posted a list of the ten best baseball games I have ever seen. From that post, I was asked to spawn off another list…the ten best games I have ever attended. That one sounded like fun too. I again used the theory that if it was the first one I could think of, it must have been the best. So, here is what I came up with. The top six were easy since they were on the other list. If you want to know more about them, you’ll have to see the other post. Again, in no particular order (other than being ranked from #10 to #1) here is my list of top ten games I have attended:

#10. May 7, 1999. Angels of Anaheim vs. Boston Red Sox. A buddy of mine called me up at the last minute with an extra ticket to this game. I couldn’t say yes fast enough. It was the return to Fenway of Mo Vaughn. If that wasn’t enough, Pedro Martinez would be on the mound. We were all giddy at the prospect of Pedro facing the Hit Dog. As was usually the case with Pedro, his performance didn’t meet our expectations. It far exceeded them. Pedro struck out 15 batters over eight innings, including Big Mo twice. It was just another example of why there’s nobody else like Pedro.

#9. April 10, 1998. Seattle Mariners vs. Boston Red Sox. Another game with Mo Vaughn in the storyline. This was the home opener of the 1998 season. I’ve talked about this game already here, but a quick run-down. The Sox were manhandled by Randy Johnson for eight innings. When he left in the eighth, the Mariners countered with Heathcliff Slocumb. After watching Slocumb blow save after save for the Sox, everyone in the park hoped the Sox could pull something out. And pulled they did. A Mo Vaughn walk-off grand slam sent everyone in Boston home happy.

#8. April 6, 2001. Tampa Bay Devil Rays vs. Boston Red Sox. Manny Comes to Fenway. This was Manny’s very first appearance at Fenway in a Red Sox uniform. The Sox had started the season on the road, and Sox fans were already excited about what their off-season signing could do. When the Devil Rays jumped to a 3-0 lead in the first, fears of “here we go again” filled everyone’s minds. In the home half, the first two batters reached. But, an out made a squander a real possibility. Enter Manny. On the first pitch he sees, he deposits a game tying three-run homer into the screen. Everything was different. Manny led the Sox to an Opening Day victory, and showed everyone that things would be different with Manny on the team.

#7. October 16, 1999. New York Yankees vs. Boston Red Sox. Game three of the 1999 ALCS. I’m actually a little surprised that this game didn’t make the original list. I guess you need to draw the line somewhere. In the first trip by the Red Sox to the ALCS in quite some time, they faced the Yankees. It was the first ever play-off meeting between the two. Down 0-2 in the series, the Sox sent Pedro Martinez to the mound facing Roger Clemens. Old ace vs. new ace. Past vs. present. The hype was beyond the moon. Once again, Pedro rose to the challenges. Once again, Clemens scurried away dragging his tail. Pedro struck out 12 over seven innings of shutout ball. Along the way, he handed the Yankees the only loss they would get in the ’99 postseason.

(#6 - #1)
#6. October 10, 1999. Cleveland Indians vs. Boston Red Sox
#5. April 27, 2002. Tampa Bay Devil Rays vs. Boston Red Sox
#4. October 20, 2007. Cleveland Indians vs. Boston Red Sox
#3. October 23, 2004. St. Louis Cardinals vs. Boston Red Sox.
#2. October 17, 2004. New York Yankees vs. Boston Red Sox
#1. July 13, 1999. National League vs. American League


  1. Cool list. Of those you listed, I was at #8, #6, and #5, all a lot of fun.

    I didn't move back to New England until 2000, but #7 is quite possibly one of the most fun games I ever watched on TV, and my brother got to go.

    An underrated game I wasn't at but watched on TV was 2008 ALCS G5, when we rallied from down 7-0 in the game, and 3-1 in the series, to come back and win. It gets lost because the series didn't end well, but it felt like a classic at the time.

  2. You're right about the Game Five. A great game. If the Sox win the series, it probably gets a notch or two on the list.


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