YOU ARE HERE: LAT HomeCollections

American League Roundup : McGwire Ends Fenway Slump in A's 11-6 Win

July 18, 1987|DAN HAFNER

It figured that the inviting Green Monster at Boston's Fenway Park would suffer the fate the other stadiums that Mark McGwire has batted in this season.

After getting only a single in his first 15 at-bats in the best hitter's park in the league, McGwire hit his 34th home run Friday night.

It was a three-run shot that highlighted a seven-run 10th inning that enabled the Oakland A's to beat the Red Sox, 11-6.

Actually, McGwire, the rookie with a shot at breaking Roger Maris' major league home run record of 61, has been in a bit of a slump. He got his chance for a fifth at-bat in his fourth game at Fenway only because Boston outfielder Mike Greenwell, forced to make his debut as a catcher when the game went into extra innings, made an error to ignite the Oakland rally.

After a leadoff double by Terry Steinbach to open the 10th, Alfredo Griffin bunted. Greenwell pounced on the ball but threw it into right field, allowing Steinbach to score and Griffin to go to second.

Later in the inning, McGwire, who had been at bat 10 times since hitting his 33rd home run last Saturday, hit a three-run homer off Calvin Schiraldi to make it 9-4.

A two-run triple by Boston's Ellis Burks with two out in the bottom of the ninth had tied the score at 4-4. Joaquin Andujar had held the Red Sox to just five hits and led, 4-1, after seven innings.

McGwire was fortunate that the wind started blowing out to left field in the 10th inning.

"When the wind started blowing out," said Carney Lansford, who also homered in the 10th, "the game turned into one of those Fenway Park games. Until then, the pitchers were in control."

The 3-hour 53-minute marathon had 26 hits, 14 by Oakland. There were 8 doubles, 2 triples and 2 homers.

Detroit 7, Seattle 0--For the first half of the season, while his club was giving up more than four runs a game, Tiger Manager Sparky Anderson was raving about how good his pitching staff was.

As the Tigers make their bid to overtake the New York Yankees in the second half, the pitchers are beginning to live up to Anderson's billing.

Frank Tanana pitched a three-hitter and his 30th career shutout at Detroit to give Anderson his 700th victory.

Tanana (9-6) faced only 29 batters in a superb performance. With Alan Trammell getting three hits, including a home run, the Tigers gave the veteran left-hander plenty of support.

Manager Dick Williams of the Mariners missed the game to attend the funeral of a close friend. Coach Ozzie Virgil, the acting Seattle manager, watched Tanana, once one of baseball's hardest throwers, baffle the Mariners with a variety of off-speed pitches.

Baltimore 3, Kansas City 1--The Orioles have figured out how to get the best out of former Dodger Tom Niedenfuer. The solution: Use him to get just one out.

After rookie Eric Bell held the Royals to 6 hits and struck out a career-high 9 batters in 8 innings at Kansas City, Niedenfuer came in to strike out Bo Jackson for the last out and earn his fourth save and second in a row.

Thursday night, Niedenfuer also got one out for the save. It mattered not that on each occasion Niedenfuer walked a batter before getting the final out. Before striking out Jackson, Niedenfuer walked Frank White to put the potential go-ahead run on base.

Eddie Murray snapped a 1-1 tie with an eighth-inning single, and the Orioles handed the fading Royals their eighth loss in nine games.

Rookie Billy Ripken singled to start the winning rally.

Minnesota 3, Toronto 2--Al Newman doubled home the winning run in the seventh inning at Minneapolis, and the Twins ended a string of 10 straight losses to the Blue Jays.

The Twins had been outscored, 41-8, in the previous five games between the teams this year and had lost the last five to Toronto last season.

Frank Viola (9-6) pitched a strong seven innings, and Jeff Reardon pitched a scoreless ninth for his 18th save.

Chicago 4, Cleveland 3--Carlton Fisk's infield single with the bases loaded scored Gary Redus in the 10th inning at Chicago to spoil new Indian Manager Doc Edwards' bid for a second straight victory.

Fisk took a big swing and hit a slow roller to second baseman Tommy Hinzo, who couldn't pick it up.

Los Angeles Times Articles