"I've never been around a club quite like this," Red Sox manager Grady Little said. "Tonight, the way that game went down, it typified our whole season."
"Whichever way it goes," Torre said, "I think this series has been entertaining for people and grueling for everybody who had to play in it or watch it from the dugout. There's a lot of pressure, a lot of tension."
Much of it eased for the Red Sox last night. They have Martinez ready for the clincher, and knuckleballer Tim Wakefield available in relief after twice beating the Yankees as a starter. Their star shortstop has emerged from an offensive funk that dated back to early September. Ortiz, Mueller and Kevin Millar, all slumping at the wrong time, combined for seven hits and four RBIs.
And a curse is showing more signs of being lifted.
"We know we have our work cut out for us," Torre said, "and I'm sure they do, too."
Boston 9, New York 6 (Series tied 3-3) Today's game
Boston (Martinez 14-4, 2.22) at N.Y. (Clemens 17-9, 3.91), 8:18 p.m., chs. 45, 5
ALCS by the numbers
13 Roger Clemens' seasons in Boston.
17 Years ago Clemens pitched Sox to Series.
26 Boston-N.Y. games this season.
4 Hits for Nomar Garciaparra yesterday.