2004 American League Championship Series

35th edition of Major League Baseball's American League Championship Series

The 2004 American League Championship Series (ALCS) was a best-of-seven playoff series in the 2004 Major League Baseball season. It featured the New York Yankees and the Boston Red Sox. The Red Sox beat the Yankees in seven games. It was a rematch of the 2003 ALCS.

2004 American League Championship Series
Team (Wins) Manager Season
Boston Red Sox (4) Terry Francona 98–64, .605, GB: 3
New York Yankees (3) Joe Torre 101–61, .623, GA: 3
Dates: October 12–October 20
MVP: David Ortiz (Boston)
Television: Fox
TV announcers: Joe Buck, Tim McCarver, Al Leiter
Radio: ESPN
Radio announcers: Jon Miller, Joe Morgan
Umpires: Randy Marsh, Jeff Nelson, John Hirschbeck, Jim Joyce, Jeff Kellogg, Joe West
ALDS: New York Yankees over Minnesota Twins (3–1)
  Boston Red Sox over Anaheim Angels (3–0)
 < 2003 ALCS 2005 > 
2004 World Series

The Yankees won the first three games of the series. The Red Sox then won the next four to win the series. This was the first time a team won a best-of-seven playoff series after losing the first three games. Prior to this, no team in Major League Baseball even forced a game 7 after trailing 3 games to none.

Game 1


The Yankees won the first game by a score of 10-7. They scored six runs off Red Sox starter Curt Schilling. Mike Mussina pitched a perfect game through six innings. The Red Sox rallied for five runs in the seventh and two in the eighth, but came up short.

Game 2


The second game featured a pitchers duel between John Lieber and Pedro Martinez. Martinez allowed a run in the first inning. The 1-0 score held until the sixth inning when Martinez gave up a two-run home run. The Yankees won this game by a score of 3-1.

Game 3


With the series headed to Fenway Park, this game was originally scheduled for October 15. It was rescheduled for the next day due to rain. The Yankees won game three by a score of 19-8, giving them a 3 games to none series lead. This was also the longest nine-inning postseason game, lasting 4 hours and 20 minutes.

Game 4


This was the turning point of the series. The Yankees took a 2-0 lead in the third inning. The Red Sox scored three in the fifth to take the lead. But then the Yankees took a 4-3 in the sixth.

In the bottom of the ninth inning, the Red Sox were three outs from being eliminated, facing Mariano Rivera. Rivera walked leadoff hitter Kevin Millar. Dave Roberts was put in as a pinch runner and stole second base. Bill Mueller drove in Roberts to tie the game and force extra innings. In the bottom of the twelfth inning, David Ortiz hit a walk-off two-run home run, giving the Red Sox a 6-4 win and cutting the Yankees series lead 3 games to 1.

Game 5


The Red Sox scored first this time with two in the first inning, but the Yankees then took a 4-2 lead in the sixth. However, the Red Sox rallied in the eighth. David Ortiz lead off the inning with a home run to make the score 4-3. Jason Varitek's sacrifice fly tied the game. The score remained tied until David Ortiz hit a walk-off RBI single that scored Johnny Damon in the bottom of the 14th.

Game 6


For Games 6 and 7, the series returned to Yankee Stadium. The Red Sox won the sixth game by a score of 4-2, thanks to seven solid innings from Curt Schilling. Prior the game, Schilling had his achilles tendon operated on. Because of it, this game was known as the "bloody sock game".

Game 7


In the seventh game, the Red Sox scored first on a two-run home run from David Ortiz in the first inning. In the second, Johnny Damon hit a grand slam to make the score 6-0. This put the Red Sox ahead for good. Damon hit another home run in the fourth to make it 8-1 Red Sox. Derek Lowe pitched six innings, allowing only one run. The Yankees scored twice off Pedro Martinez, who relieved Lowe in the seventh. The Red Sox scored two more in the eighth and ninth innings to widen their lead to 10-3. Ruben Sierra grounded out for the final out. The Red Sox thereby won the series and became the first MLB team to win a best-of-seven series after losing the first three games.

The Red Sox would go on to win the World Series against the St. Louis Cardinals in four games. It was the Red Sox's first World Series title since 1918.