October 21 in Cleveland Indians history: Triple dose of losses

Leon Halip

Welcome to the most painful of late October days, Game 1 of the 1995 Series (Maddux); a barnburner in Game 3 of the 1997 Series; and the finale of the complete collapse in the 2007 ALCS.

October 21

W

L

Pct

All-Time

0

3

.000

Home

0

1

.000

Road

0

2

.000

Tuesday

0

1

.000

Saturday

0

1

.000

Sunday

0

1

.000

Braves WS-1 1995

0

1

.000

Marlins WS-3 1997

0

1

.000

Red Sox ALCS-7 2007

0

1

.000

1995 World Series Game 1, Atlanta-Fulton County Stadium: Braves 3, Indians 2

After sweeping over the Red Sox in the ALDS and surviving a tough six game series with the Mariners, the Indians headed to Atlanta to take on a franchise they had previously met in the World Series back in 1948, although that was two cities prior, in Boston. As dominant as the Indians were in the AL Central that year, the Braves were fairly similar in the NL East. They finished 21 games up on the Mets and Phillies. They took three of four from the Rockies in the NLDS and swept the Reds in the NLCS, so they were fully rested going into this series.

Not only were the Braves rested, but perennial Cy Young candidate Greg Maddux was the game one starter. It would be a battle of strengths as the best offense in the AL would face the best pitcher (and staff) in the NL. Kenny Lofton opened the series with a grounder to Rafael Belliard, who booted it. Lofton stole second, but Omar Vizquel struck out on the pitch. Lofton then also nabbed third and scored on Carlos Baerga's grounder to short. Maddux retired Albert Belle on a grounder to short as well, but the Tribe had an unearned run and a 1-0 lead.

Marquis Grissom singled to right off Orel Hershiser to start the bottom of the first. After Mark Lemke moved him over on a ground ball, Chipper Jones lined into a double play. Maddux retired Eddie Murray, Jim Thome and Manny Ramirez in order in the second. Hershiser allowed a solo shot by Fred McGriff to start their second, then got David Justice, Ryan Klesko and Charlie O'Brien in order.

Neither side got a baserunner in the third or fourth. Thome had a one out single in the fifth, but never moved. Justice worked a walk to lead off the fifth but also stayed at first. Maddux also had a perfect six and seventh frames. Lemke had a two-out single in the sixth, but the seventh is when Hershiser tired. He walked both McGriff and Justice to start the inning. Paul Assenmacher was called to face Ryan Klesko, but Bobby Cox countered with Mike Devereaux, who walked to make the bases full. With O'Brien next up, Mike Hargrove pulled his first double switch, putting Paul Sorrento at first and calling in Julian Tavarez. Another countermove brought Luis Polonia to the plate and he got the run in on a force out at second. Belliard pulled off a squeeze and the Braves had built a 3-1 lead.

Maddux breezed through the eight on a pair of ground outs and a Sandy Alomar whiff. Tavarez retired Grissom but walked Lemke. Alan Embree came in and struck out both Chipper and McGriff. Maddux came back out for the ninth and did give up his second hit of the evening, a one out liner to left by Lofton. Omar grounded out to second, with Lofton taking second. He continued on to third, forcing McGriff to throw to third wildly and the Tribe now was within one. But five pitches later, Baerga popped foul to Jones and the Braves had secured game one.

Maddux pitched brilliantly. He only gave up the two hits, walked nobody and struck out four. Both runs scored were unearned and he pitched a "Maddux", only using 95 pitches. Hershiser was pretty good until the two walks in the seventh. The Tribe's bats had been silenced by the best on the game and would have to heat up against another tough matchup, Tom Glavine, in game two or they'd be headed home down 2-0.

1997 World Series Game 3, Jacobs Field: Marlins 14, Indians 11

After earning the split in Florida, the Indians headed home with a chance to take a series lead as Charles Nagy took on Al Leiter. On the surface this seemed to be a good pitching matchup, but neither would be involved in the final decision. Although Nagy retired each of Devon white, Edgar Renteria and Bobby Bonilla on grounders, Gary Sheffield sent one deep over the fence in left for an early 1-0 Marlins lead.

The Tribe would answer quickly though. Bip Roberts reached on Letier's fielding error and moved to second on Omar Vizquel's grounder to second. Manny Ramirez also grounded out, but to third instead, holding Roberts at second. David Justice walked and then both Matt Williams and Sandy alomar had RBI singles before Jim Thome struck out. In the second, Nagy sandwiched a Moises Alou whiff in between lineouts by Darren Daulton and Jim Eisenreich. Leiter also had a better second frame as Tony Fernandez singled to left and Marquis Grissom hit into a double play.

The Marlins tied it in the third due to Nagy's wildness. Charles Johnson led off with a single and Craig Counsell struck out. But then White, Renteria and White all walked ot force in a run. Nagy did get out of the jam with a 1-6-3 double play from Bonilla. They took the lead in the fourth on a Darren Daulton leadoff home run to deep right-center.

Leiter also had a batch of wildness. In the fourth, both Sandy Alomar and Thome walked. Fernandez hit a deep fly to center that moved them both up and Grissom walked to load the bases. After Roberts struck out, Leiter walked Vizquel to tie the game. Manny then hit a weak grounder to Bonilla at third that scored Thome and then Grissom on Bonilla's wild throw. Justice forced Manny at second, but the Tribe now held a 5-3 lead.

Nagy had another 1-2-3 inning albeit with a Renteria single and Sheffield 6-4-3 double play. The Tribe scored two more in the fifth on a Thome smash to deep right and chasing Leiter for Feliz Heredia. With a 7-3 lead headed to the sixth, things were looking decent. But Nagy surrendered his own two run shot to Eisenreich in the sixth and it was a tight ballgame again, 7-5.

Lefty Brian Anderson came out to face Counsell and White in the seventh, with Counsell singling and White moving him over on a grounder to second. Mike Jackson came in to face the heart of the order and got burned. Renteria singled in Counsell and Sheffield doubled to tie the game. Bonilla moved him to third on a grounder. Daulton was walked intentionally and Alou just about untied it with a deep fly out to left-center. Heredia continued his mastery of the Tribe in the seventh, three up and three down.

Paul Assenmacher came out for the eighth and struck out pinch hitter Kurt Abbott. But Johnson, Counsell and White all singled to load the bases. After Renteria popped up, Eric Plunk came in and got the final out, a Sheffield ground ball. Dennis Cook took over for Heredia and Grissom cracked a single to the hole. After Roberts bunted him over, Omar struck out and Manny popped out foul.

With the score tied in the ninth, Plunk came back out and walked Bonilla. Daulton laced a single to center, but Grissom's throw was errant, scoring Bonilla and Daulton taking third. He then struck out Alou and gave a free pass to pinch hitter Cliff Floyd. Plunk then picked off Floyd, but he was safe in Thome's error, with Daulton scoring. A single by Johnson ended Plunk's night and on came Alvin Morman. Counsell grounded one to Fernandez, who booted it, scoring Floyd. After White stuck out, Renteria walked to load the sacks again. Jose Mesa came in to keep the deficit at three, but failed. Sheffield plated two more with a single. After a wild pitch put both Renteria and Sheffield in scoring position, Bonilla also hit a two RBI single. When Daulton finally lined out, the hideous inning of seven runs on four hits and three errors was over.

Trailing by seven, the Tribe actually threatened in the bottom half. Robb Nen came in as he had already warmed up the previous inning. He walked Justice to start things off but whiffed Williams. Brian Giles pinch hit for Alomar and also walked. Thome singled to load the bases. Fernandez scored one with a liner to deep left. Grissom singled in one more and Roberts doubled in two, but Omar grounded out. After a total defensive lapse in the ninth, the Tribe had ceded home field back to the Marlins.

2007 ALCS Game 7, Fenway Park: Red Sox 11, Indians 2

With the implosion of his two aces, Eric Wedge sent out Jake Westbrook in the do or die game seven against Daisuke Matsuzaka. Westbrook had bettered him in game three, but the Red Sox were rolling coming into this game.

Matsuzaka had a quick 1-2-3 first while Westbrook was not nearly as sharp. Dustin Pedroia and Kevin Youkilis again started off the game with base knocks. David Ortiz struck out, but Manny Ramirez grounded one to deep short, scoring Pedroia. Mike Lowell also singled to load the bases before JD Drew hit into a 6-4-3 double play to keep the damage to just one run. The Tribe did nothing in the second, only seeing eight pitches. Two more leadoff hits, a Jason Varitek double and Jacoby Ellsbury, got the Sox one more before Julio Lugo hit into another double play and Pedroia flew out.

Casey Blake finally got the Indians' first hit with two out in the third and even made it to second on a wild pitch, but Grady Sizemore struck out. Youkilis had another leadoff hit, a double, in the third and ended up scoring after an Ortiz grounder and a sacrifice fly by Lowell. And after three, the lead was 3-0.

Finally the Tribe showed a bit of offense in the fourth. A one out double by Travis Hafner and another by Ryan Garko after seeing nine pitches, netted the first run. The Sox threatened in the bottom half again on singles by Varitek and Lugo, but Westbrook got his third double play ball. Kenny Lofton led off the fifth with liner to left, but was gunned down at second by Manny, trying to stretch it into a double. This would be costly because both Franklin Gutierrez and Casey Blake followed with singles. Instead of 3-2 with runners on first and third with nobody out, it was now first and third, with one out. Sizemore did score Gutierrez with a flyball, but the inning ended with a nine pitch strikeout by Asdrubal.

Westbrook finally settled down and had clean fifth and sixth innings, with nothing leaving the infield and four strikeouts. Matsuzaka was pulled after five innings and country mate Hideki Okajima retired the side on eleven pitches in the sixth. In the seventh, he worked around a Lugo error on a Lofton grounder and a Gutierrez single by getting Blake to do the round the infield 5-4-3 double play.

Blake added to his poor evening by misplaying Ellsbury grounder to start the bottom of the seventh, with Jaocby taking second. Rafael Betancourt had replaced Westbrook to start the inning and Lugo bunted Ellsbury to third. Pedroia didn't just hit a deep enough flyball to score Ellsbury, he hit one deep enough to score himself as well, pushing the lead to 5-2.

The Tribe threatened in the eighth after a leadoff bunt single by Sizemore and a single to center by Cabrera. Terry Francona didn't wait any longer, pulling Okajima in favor of his closer, Jonathan Papelbon. He struck out Hafner on three pitches, Victor hit his first pitch into a force at second, and Ryan Garko flew out to center on his fourth pitch. Damage averted.

Betancourt came back out for the eighth and any hope of a comeback by the Tribe was shredded. Lowell doubled with one out. Drew had an RBI single and Varitek hit a ground rule double. Ellsbury was walked to load the bases and then Lugo struck out for out number two. But Betancourt grooved one to Pedroia, whose double cleared the bases. Wedge finally pulled Raffy, and on Jensen Lewis' third pitch, Youkilis cranked one out, making the score 11-2.

It was all but over as Papelbon came out for the final three outs. Peralta singled to start the frame, but Lofton lined to Ellsbury (who moved from center to left), and Gutierrez and Blake both flew out to Coco Crisp in center (who had replaced Manny). The Red Sox had won three in a row, to take the series 4-3. They would go on to sweep the Colorado Rockies in the World Series.

I know we like to blame CC and Fausto for imploding in games five and six, but the offense was just as much to blame. In the final three games, the Indians were outscored 30-5. They only tallied twenty two hits and worked just five walks (all in game five). This would be the last playoff game for Cleveland until this year.

X
Log In Sign Up

forgot?
Log In Sign Up

Forgot password?

We'll email you a reset link.

If you signed up using a 3rd party account like Facebook or Twitter, please login with it instead.

Forgot password?

Try another email?

Almost done,

Join Let's Go Tribe

You must be a member of Let's Go Tribe to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Let's Go Tribe. You should read them.

Join Let's Go Tribe

You must be a member of Let's Go Tribe to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Let's Go Tribe. You should read them.

Spinner.vc97ec6e

Authenticating

Great!

Choose an available username to complete sign up.

In order to provide our users with a better overall experience, we ask for more information from Facebook when using it to login so that we can learn more about our audience and provide you with the best possible experience. We do not store specific user data and the sharing of it is not required to login with Facebook.

tracking_pixel_9351_tracker