Darrell Johnson took over as manager and the Red Sox held onto first for most of 1974. However, the team unraveled in September and Fenway Park went without post-season baseball once again.
Record: 84-78, 3rd in American League East
Manager: Darrell D. Johnson
Eddie Kasko's stint as manager ended one day before the 1973 season did. After the season Darrel Johnson was named the new Red Sox manager and in March 1974, Johnson named Carl Yastrzemski the captain of the Red Sox.
Early in the season, the team co-hosted the final Red Sox-Boston Globe Baseball Clinic at Fenway Park. Approximately 8,000 youngsters turned out for instruction on May 25 from Johnson, his coaching staff and several players.
Both Luis Tiant and Bill Lee excelled in 1974. Luis won 20 games again (22-13, 2.92) and Lee won 17 for the second consecutive season (17-15, 3.51). The only other Boston pitcher in double digits was Reggie Cleveland, who went 12-14.
The Red Sox lost a pair of position players in the first half of the season. Second baseman Doug Griffin was hit in the head by a Nolan Ryan fastball during an April 30 game at Fenway Park. Two months later, Carlton Fisk was lost for the season with a serious knee injury when a Cleveland runner slid hard at home plate.
Yastrzemski led the team in several offensive areas, including the three Triple Crown categories with a .301 average, 15 home runs and 79 RBIs. Though the Red Sox didn't have an overly-powerful lineup, they held a seven-game lead in the division as late as August 23.
However, the club began to take on water with an eight-game losing streak in late August/early September, including a disheartening Labor Day doubleheader in Baltimore in which they were swept. The Red Sox spent a full 101 days in first place, including most of the time from late May to early September, but they ultimately finished in third place, seven games behind Baltimore and five behind the Yankees.
In the 1950s, 1960s and early 1970s, the Red Sox organization and the Boston Globe teamed up to hold a regular baseball clinic at Fenway Park for thousands of local youth ballplayers. The event was initially called a "Spring training camp" for Massachusetts youngsters who had the opportunity to receive instruction from some of the Red Sox biggest names. The full Boston coaching staff and several players often attended, with upwards of ten players taking part in certain years. Among those who provided lessons was Bill Monbouquette, a Medford, Massachusetts native who had previously attended the clinic as an audience member when he was pitching in high school.
|Red Sox-Boston Globe Baseball Clinic Dates|
April 12, 1952|
April 25, 1953
May 1, 1954
April 16, 1955
April 26, 1958
April 22, 1959
May 7, 1960
April 18, 1961
May 5, 1962
April 27, 1963
May 2, 1964|
April 21, 1965
May 21, 1966
April 29, 1967
April 20, 1968
May 17, 1969
May 16, 1970
June 17, 1972
May 25, 1974