Tag Archives: Roger Clemens

1991 Rewind: Game Eighty-five

MINNESOTA 5, BOSTON 4 IN MINNESOTA

Date:  Friday, July 12.

Batting stars:  Mike Pagliarulo was 3-for-4.  Kirby Puckett was 2-for-3.  Chuck Knoblauch was 2-for-5 with a double, a stolen base (his ninth) and two runs.  Kent Hrbek was 1-for-3 with a two-run homer (his ninth) and a walk.

Pitching stars:  Paul Abbott struck out three in two perfect innings.  Steve Bedrosian pitched a scoreless inning, giving up one hit.  Rick Aguilera struck out two in a perfect inning.

Opposition stars:  Tom Brunansky was 2-for-4.  Tony Pena was 1-for-3 with a two-run homer, his third.  Luis Rivera was 1-for-3 with a home run, his fifth.

The game:  The Twins took a 2-0 lead in the first, as Puckett had a two-out single and Hrbek followed with a home run.  It stayed 2-0 until the fifth.  Brunansky led off the inning with a single and Pena followed with a two-run homer.  Rivera made it back-to-back homers and the Red Sox led 3-2.  With one out, Jody Reed walked and stole second.  He went to third on a fly out and scored on a wild pitch to make it 4-2 Boston.

The Twins cut the lead to one in the bottom of the fifth, again with two out.  Knoblauch singled, stole second, and scored when Puckett reached on an error.   With one out in the sixth Pagliarulo and Shane Mack singled and Randy Bush walked, loading the bases.  A ground out scored a run and tied the score 4-4.

Knoblauch led off the seventh with a double and was bunted to third.  Chili Davis came through with an RBI single to give the Twins a 5-4 lead.  Boston got just one single after that and did not advance the man past first base.

WP:  Abbott (3-0).  LP:  Roger Clemens (11-6)  S:  Aguilera (23).

Notes:  Mack was in left with Dan Gladden still out.  Bush was in right.  Junior Ortiz was again behind the plate in place of Brian Harper.  Greg Gagne batted first.

Paul Sorrento pinch-hit for Ortiz in the sixth and hit the run-scoring ground out that tied the game.  Harper came in to catch.  Jarvis Brown went to right field for defense in the eighth, replacing Bush.

Puckett raised his average to .317.  Abbott lowered his ERA to 3.41.  Aguilera lowered his ERA to 2.68.

Sorrento's average fell to .154.

I don't know if Harper was battling a minor injury or if Tom Kelly simply was choosing to take advantage of Ortiz' defense.  If Harper was injured, it seems odd that he kept coming in to catch when Ortiz was pinch-hit for.  But it also seems odd that Kelly would prefer Ortiz' .203 average to Harper's .332, no matter how good his defense was.  At any rate, Harper would not start again until July 14.

Allan Anderson pitched five innings, giving up four runs on five hits and three walks and striking out one.  This would be his last start until late August.  He would make three relief appearances, then go back to AAA for a month before returning on August 23.

Roger Clemens started for the Red Sox and pitched 6.1 innings, allowing five runs (four earned) on eleven hits and two walks and striking out six.  Clemens did just slightly better against the Twins in his career than he did overall.  He was 24-13, 2.97, 1.12 WHIP against Minnesota.  For his career he was 354-184, 3.12, 1.18 WHIP.

Texas lost to Toronto 6-2, so the Twins picked up a game in the standings.

Record:  The Twins were 49-36, in first place in the American League West, two games ahead of Texas.

1991 Rewind: Game Twenty-seven

BOSTON 8, MINNESOTA 3 IN BOSTON

Date:  Wednesday, May 8.

Batting star:  Brian Harper was 3-for-4 with three RBIs.

Pitching star:  Terry Leach struck out two in two perfect innings.

Opposition stars:  Roger Clemens struck out ten in eight innings, giving up one run on four hits and a walk.  Wade Boggs was 3-for-3 with a double, two walks, and two RBIs.  Jody Reed was 3-for-4 with two doubles, a walk, and three RBIs.  Carlos Quintana was 2-for-4 with a walk and two runs.

The game:  The Red Sox put men on first and third with none out in the first inning and did not score.  They would not be denied in the second, however, as Quintana singled, Luis Rivera walked, and Boggs hit a two-out single to score the first run of the game.  It could've been worse, though, as Boston left the bases loaded.

The Red Sox increased their lead in the third, as three walks and a two-run single by Tony Pena made the score 3-0.  They added another in the fourth on two singles and a sacrifice fly by Tom Brunansky, and got one more in the fifth when Boggs singled and scored on Reed's double, making the score 5-0.

The Twins finally got on the board in the seventh when Kirby Puckett led off with a double and scored on Harper's two-out single.  Boston got the run back with interest in the bottom of the seventh.  A single, an error, and a walk loaded the bases.  Boggs then walked to force in a run and Reed hit a two-run double, making the score 8-1.  The Twins got two in the ninth on two walks and Harper's two-run double, but it was far too little and far too late.

WP:  Clemens (6-0).  LP:  Jack Morris (2-4).  S:  None.

Notes:  Randy Bush was again in right field in place of Shane Mack.  Granted that Mack was off to a slow start, but so was Bush.  With an 0-for-3 in this game, he was batting .189/.286/.216.  Given the difference in defense, there was really no good reason to play Bush in right field this much.

Gene Larkin was again at first base in place of Kent Hrbek.

With the blowout game, there were a lot of late-inning substitutions.  Carmelo Castillo pinch-hit for Dan Gladden and went to right field, with Bush moving to left.  Mack replaced Puckett in center.  Al Newman pinch-hit for Greg Gagne and stayed in to play short.  Scott Leius pinch-hit for Bush and Junior Ortiz pinch-hit for Mike Pagliarulo.

Harper raised his average to .338.  Gagne was 0-for-2 and was at .329.  Chili Davis was 1-for-4 and was batting .322.  Puckett was 1-for-3 to go to .317.  Chuck Knoblauch was 0-for-3 with a walk and was batting .307.

Castillo was 0-for-1 and was batting .182.  Leius walked and remained at .185.  Bush, as stated above, was at .189.  Mack walked and remained at .190.

Morris pitched five innings and allowed five runs on ten his and five walks while striking out six.  His ERA was 5.89.  Carl Willis pitched an inning and allowed three runs (two earned) on two hits and two walks and struck out one.  His ERA was 7.94.

Clemens, as you may remember was Really Good back then.  He would win his third Cy Young Award, and it was the fifth time in six years that he finished in the top six.  He would make it six times in seven years in 1992.  He ended up with seven Cys, 1986, 1987, 1991, 1997, 1998, 2001, and 2004.  His numbers obviously say he should be in the Hall of Fame, and we all know the only reason he's not.

The Twins failed in their attempt to get over .500.  Could they get back to .500 in the next game?

Record:  The Twins were 13-14 and remained tied for fifth with California in the American League West.  They were 4.5 games behind Oakland.