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The Red Sox lose against the A's, but it's not all bad on October 10 in Boston history.
Games of Note: The Red Sox are facing the Athletics in the American League Championship Series yet again, this time in 1990. Once more, the Sox are facing elimination by way of a sweep. The A's reach their third-straight World Series with help from Dave Stewart, who had already helped Oakland to victory in game one. Roger Clemens didn't get to spend much time in the rematch, as he was tossed in the second for arguing balls and strikes. The Sox bench understandably lost it, throwing water coolers on to the field, while catcher Tony Pena, manager Joe Morgan, and Clemens continued to argue being tossed. Marty Barrett was tossed for arguing, along with Morgan and Clemens, and the then-undermanned Sox ended up losing 3-1. On the whole, the Sox were outscored 20 to 4.
The A's would go on to lose to the Reds in the World Series, making them 0-2 in World Series reached after beating the Sox in the ALCS. So there's that.
Jumping ahead to 1999, the Red Sox are facing the Indians in the ALDS. Currently down two games to one, the Sox put up a historic effort. Bartolo Colon was pitching on three days rest since Jaret Wright, who was expected to start, pitched in relief in the previous game after Dave Burba left his start in the fourth with an arm injury. Manager Mike Hargrove's aggressiveness -- trying to win it right then with Wright, rather than using the bullpen and going for it in game four -- jut might have cost the Indians the series. That's because Colon, who had thrown eight innings in 49 degree weather in game one, looked like someone who wasn't quite ready to throw again. He gave up seven runs in an inning of work, failing to escape the second. Reliever Steve Karsay gave up three runs after that -- enough for the Sox to win -- but they didn't stop piling on there.
Steve Reed gave up eight runs in his inning of work. Paul Assenmacher and Paul Shuey both gave up two runs a piece as well, giving Boston a playoff-record 23 runs in one game. Indians' pitching walked five, but gave up 24 hits in their eight innings of work. Jose Offerman drove in five runs on three hits, John Valentine pushed seven across with four hits, two of them home runs, and Jason Varitek plated three with his four hits.
The Sox didn't pitch particularly well, with Kent Mercker leaving after less than two innings of work, but five relievers limited the Indians to five runs the rest of the way. On a normal night, that might be too much, but Boston picked the right night for a sub-par pitching performance, and still outscored the Indians more than three-to-one.
Transactions: Tony Conigliaro was signed as an amateur free agent on this day in 1962. Conigliaro was 17 at the time, and would play in the majors as a teenager during the 1964 season. Did you happen to be impressed with Bryce Harper's rookie campaign as a 19-year-old? Harper hit .270/.340/.477 with 22 homers in 139 games and 597 plate appearances. Conigliaro, though, he hit .290/.354/.530, and set the record for homers by a teenager with 24. He played in just 111 games, though, with 444 plate appearances, and did so in an era where offense was deflated relative to what it is today: Conigliaro's line equated to a 137 OPS+, whereas Harper's 2012 line comes to 119. Harper's season was definitely great, but Conigliaro's is right up there with Hall of Famer Mel Ott's age-19 season.
Birthdays: Floyd Baker was born on this day in 1916. Baker passed away in 2004, at the age of 88, but he played with the Red Sox as a much younger man back in 1953 and 1954. Baker played in the majors for 13 seasons, and came to Boston after the Sox purchased him from the Washington Senators. The Phillies plucked Baker from the Sox in the middle of the next season, before he played his last season-and-a-half.