10/18/2004 1:48 PM ET
ALCS Game 5 Hot Sheet
Ten topics to think about before Monday's contest
By Jesse Sanchez / MLB.com
|If the Red Sox manage to stay alive, Curt Schilling will pitch Game 6. (Charles Krupa/AP)
BOSTON -- The American League Championship Series stays at Fenway Park, where the Yankees and
Red Sox will play Game 5 at 5 p.m. ET on Monday. Here is what people around the ALCS are talking
1. Pedro Martinez talking back to his "daddy"
In what could be his last start as a Red Sox pitcher, Martinez, a free agent at the end of the season, will be
fired up and ready to go. Look for the double-finger point, the cheers, and the right-hander to come out
with everything he has. The Red Sox need it if they expect to climb back into the series against a Yankees
club that is looking to put the nail in the coffin. Martinez wants to prove he's not daddy's little boy
2. Curt Schilling's magical boot
They said it could not be done. They said he would not likely pitch again in this series, but look at Schilling now. Should
the Red Sox win Monday, Schilling is tabbed to start Game 6 in New York, bad right ankle and all. When
his injury was announced, it changed the complexion of the entire series and now that his protective shoe
fits, it has changed again. Thanks Dr. Scholl.
"He did very well," Red Sox manager Terry Francona said of Schilling's throwing session Sunday. "As far
as I'm concerned, it's not an issue. We've just got to get to Game 6."
3. Godzilla lives
The University of Kansas is paying homage to the real Godzilla later this month with a three-day scholarly
conference for the 50th anniversary of his first film.
MLB's Godzilla, Hideki Matsui, also deserves some props. He has a record eight extra-base hits in the
postseason and is hitting .550. Six of Matsui's last seven hits have gone for extra bases and he has at least
two extra-base hits in three of four games in the ALCS.
"I think the biggest factor is just knowing the pitchers better and what type of pitches they throw,"
Matsui said. "I think that's been the biggest reason."
4. Don't call him daddy. Really don't call him coach.
First things first, the position Francona and Joe Torre hold on their
respective teams is manager -- not coach. A reporter was reminded of
that title after Sunday's 12th inning victory by Boston, a mere 14
hours or so before Monday's game. The exchange:
Reporter: "Coach, there's been a lot, lot of pitches thrown the last
two nights. With the afternoon game tomorrow, is fatigue at all a
factor for Jason Varitek?"
Francona: "Fatigue is going to be [a factor] for me if you keep calling
5. A-Rod welcome mats on sale
If the Red Sox fans didn't hate Alex Rodriguez before this ALCS, they really hate him now. Rodriguez,
who came so close to being a Red Sox player, has scored 11 runs and is hitting .368 in the ALCS. He has
two monster home runs that have landed on the parking garage behind left field. Perhaps he promised the owner
of the Gold's Gym behind left field a couple of baseballs for letting him use the facility because he sure has
6. Don't call them bit players
Red Sox infielders Doug Mientkiewicz and Dave Roberts have spent their careers as everyday players but
have been relegated to bench roles for Boston. That's not a bad thing. On Sunday, Mientkiewicz placed a
perfect sacrifice bunt and Roberts stole a base and scored the game-tying run.
Look for these "role" players to come up big and Boston's deep bench to be a factor.
"I think Dave is one of the few runners in the league that you can put him in a situation like that, give him
the green light and he can go ahead and steal a base when they are trying to hold him and not let him steal,"
Francona said. "He's done that a few times and directly led to wins for us."
7. Coming back from 3-0
The sign in the outfield read "Make history or be history" and that's exactly what the Red Sox are trying to
do. With a victory Sunday, the Red Sox became only the sixth team in 26 series to trail a series 3-0 and
avoid elimination with a win. A win Monday would be a major blow to the Yankees' psyche.
"Whenever you get the chance to go for it and get the opportunity to win a game against them, you've got to
try hard," David Ortiz said. "We are 3-1 right now. You never know what can happen, but we're going to
keep playing the game."
8. Free ball, baby
Who said there is no justice in baseball? After Friday's rainout, the teams
have combined to play for 9 hours and 22 minutes in the two games that followed. Saturday's game
established a record as the longest nine-inning game at 4 hours, 20 minutes. Sunday's game lasted 5 hours
and 2 minutes, an ALCS record for an extra-inning game.
The fans who missed Friday's game because of the rain will get a real treat in Martinez vs. Mike
9. Bullpen blues
10. Red Sox fans vs. speakers in right field
Look for long outings from Martinez and Mussina -- out of necessity because both bullpens are depleted.
The Yankees used five pitchers, including four relievers, Sunday. The Red Sox used six pitchers, including
five relievers. Keep an eye on patient hitters and pitch counts -- both will be big factors Monday.
The Red Sox faithful in right field have grown tired of the constant announcements about the feats of
Bernie Williams, Matsui and Rodriguez read over the P.A. system for the hordes of media seated in the
auxiliary seating in the section. Boston fans don't want to hear that Williams has more LCS hits than Pete
Rose with 48 and they let it be known -- loudly.
Jesse Sanchez is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.