The 1997 American League Championship Series (ALCS) pitted the Cleveland Indians, who won coming back against the defending World Series champion New York Yankees in the AL Division Series, and the Baltimore Orioles, who went wire-to-wire and beat the Seattle Mariners in the Division Series. The Indians stunned the Orioles, winning on bizarre plays or remarkable comebacks, and won the Series four games to two, but went on to lose to the Florida Marlins in the well-fought, seesaw, seven-game battle of the 1997 World Series. The Orioles had home field advantage, which was predetermined and assigned to either the East Division champions or their opponents in the Division Series.
|1997 American League Championship Series|
|MVP||Marquis Grissom (Cleveland)|
|Umpires||Joe Brinkman, Jim Joyce, John Hirschbeck, Durwood Merrill, Larry McCoy, Mike Reilly|
|TV announcers||Joe Buck, Tim McCarver and Bob Brenly|
|Radio announcers||John Rooney and Jeff Torborg|
Cleveland won the series, 4–2.
|1||October 8||Cleveland Indians – 0, Baltimore Orioles – 3||Oriole Park at Camden Yards||2:33||49,029|
|2||October 9||Cleveland Indians – 5, Baltimore Orioles – 4||Oriole Park at Camden Yards||3:53||49,131|
|3||October 11||Baltimore Orioles – 1, Cleveland Indians – 2 (12 innings)||Jacobs Field||4:51||45,057|
|4||October 12||Baltimore Orioles – 7, Cleveland Indians – 8||Jacobs Field||3:32||45,081|
|5||October 13||Baltimore Orioles – 4, Cleveland Indians – 2||Jacobs Field||3:08||45,068|
|6||October 15||Cleveland Indians – 1, Baltimore Orioles – 0 (11 innings)||Oriole Park at Camden Yards||3:52||49,075|
|WP: Scott Erickson (1–0) LP: Chad Ogea (0–1) Sv: Randy Myers (1)|
BAL: Brady Anderson (1), Roberto Alomar (1)
The Orioles grabbed an early 1–0 series lead on the strong performance by starting pitcher Scott Erickson who gave up four hits, all singles, over eight innings of work. The Indians only got one runner to second base offensively. On the other hand, Orioles center-fielder Brady Anderson took Indians starter Chad Ogea's first offering in the bottom of the first out of the park, giving the Orioles a 1–0. In the bottom of the third Anderson's double was followed by a Roberto Alomar home run, giving Erickson a 3–0 cushion. Randy Myers pitched a clean ninth inning for the save.
|WP: Paul Assenmacher (1–0) LP: Armando Benítez (0–1) Sv: José Mesa (1)|
CLE: Manny Ramírez (1), Marquis Grissom (1)
BAL: Cal Ripken (1)
In Game 2, Charles Nagy and Jimmy Key matched up for a much-needed win. Key allowed a two-run homer to Manny Ramírez in the top of the first. Nagy would also allow a two-run homer in the bottom of the second to Cal Ripken, Jr. Then Mike Bordick hit the go-ahead two-run single off Nagy in the sixth that knocked Nagy out of the game. With the Tribe trailing 4–2 in the top of the eighth inning, two walks put two men on with two out. Armando Benítez faced Marquis Grissom and Grissom would deliver with a series-altering three-run homer that gave the Indians a 5–4 lead. That lead would stand as the Cleveland bullpen kept the Orioles scoreless to even the series at a game apiece.
|WP: Eric Plunk (1–0) LP: Randy Myers (0–1)|
With the Series even at 1-1, Orel Hershiser dueled with Orioles pitcher Mike Mussina at Jacobs Field. In this game, Mussina would set an LCS record with fifteen strikeouts (which would be matched by Liván Hernández in the NLCS the very next day). The Indians held a 1–0 lead into the ninth, but José Mesa blew the save after Marquis Grissom lost a fly ball from Brady Anderson in the lights and the game went to extra innings. With Randy Myers on the mound for Baltimore in the bottom of the 12th, Marquis Grissom walked, then a single by Tony Fernández moved him to third. With one out, Omar Vizquel motioned to bunt. When the pitch came, it passed through the strike zone, with Vizquel apparently missing the ball. The ball got away from Orioles catcher Lenny Webster, allowing Grissom to score the winning run. Webster and Myers thought the ball was fouled off and did nothing to stop Grissom, but the ball was not ruled foul. Although Orioles manager Davey Johnson argued the call, the umpire's call stood.
|WP: José Mesa (1–0) LP: Alan Mills (0–1)|
BAL: Brady Anderson (2), Harold Baines (1), Rafael Palmeiro (1)
CLE: Sandy Alomar, Jr. (1), Manny Ramírez (2)
Scott Erickson returned to the mound against Indians starter Jaret Wright. After being given an early 1–0 lead, Erickson allowed a two-run homer to Sandy Alomar, Jr.. However, the Orioles scored four more runs off Wright to build a 5–2 lead. The Indians closed to within two in the fourth, but in the fifth, an even more bizarre play than Vizquel's missed bunt occurred. After giving up two more runs, Erickson was relieved by Arthur Rhodes with two Indians on base and two outs. Rhodes threw a wild pitch with Grissom at bat, allowing David Justice to score from third. However, he collided with Rhodes at home, and home plate umpire Durwood Merrill obscured Lenny Webster's view of the ball. Merrill motioned for someone to get the ball as Sandy Alomar also scored. Now down 2 runs, Baltimore would score a run in the 7th. The Orioles would tie the game in the ninth inning again off José Mesa. Sandy Alomar singled in the winning run in the bottom of the ninth, giving the Indians an 8–7 win as well as a three games to one lead in the Series.
|WP: Scott Kamieniecki (1–0) LP: Chad Ogea (0–2)|
BAL: Eric Davis (1)
With the Orioles facing elimination they took a 2–0 lead in the third inning when right-fielder Gerónimo Berroa singled with the bases loaded off Cleveland starter Chad Ogea. From there Orioles starter Scott Kamieniecki held the Indians scoreless through five innings. Jimmy Key then turned in three scoreless innings in relief of Kamieniecki, who left the game due to elbow stiffness. Indians reliever Paul Assenmacher allowed four hits and two runs, including a home run by Eric Davis, in the ninth inning to stretch the Baltimore lead to 4–0. Orioles closer Randy Myers allowed RBI doubles to Matt Williams and Tony Fernández in the bottom of the ninth, but the Orioles held on for a 4–2 win, sending the series back to Baltimore.
|WP: Brian Anderson (1–0) LP: Armando Benítez (0–2) Sv: José Mesa (2)|
CLE: Tony Fernández (1)
Charles Nagy and Mike Mussina kept the game scoreless and the game proceeded to the 11th inning. In the 11th, Tony Fernández, who hit a batting practice ball that bruised Bip Roberts' thumb (and, as a result, replaced Roberts at second base), hit a home run that gave the Indians a 1–0 eleventh inning lead. With two outs in the bottom half of the eleventh, Brady Anderson singled to right off José Mesa. With Anderson on as the tying run, Roberto Alomar came up to bat. Alomar struck out looking on a pitch that appeared inside at first but came back across the plate. This gave Cleveland the out and the trip to the World Series.
|Total attendance: 282,441 Average attendance: 47,074|
Christopher Allen Hoiles (born March 20, 1965) is an American former professional baseball player. He played his entire Major League Baseball career as a catcher for the Baltimore Orioles from 1989 to 1998. Although his playing career was shortened by injuries, Hoiles was considered one of the best all-around catchers in Major League Baseball, performing well both offensively and defensively.Derek Jeter
Derek Sanderson Jeter ( JEE-tər; born June 26, 1974) is an American former professional baseball shortstop, businessman, and baseball executive. He has been the chief executive officer (CEO) and part owner of the Miami Marlins of Major League Baseball (MLB) since September 2017.
As a shortstop, Jeter spent his entire 20-year MLB playing career with the New York Yankees. A five-time World Series champion, Jeter is regarded as one of the primary contributors to the Yankees' success of the late 1990s and early 2000s for his hitting, baserunning, fielding, and leadership. He is the Yankees' all-time career leader in hits (3,465), doubles (544), games played (2,747), stolen bases (358), times on base (4,716), plate appearances (12,602) and at bats (11,195). His accolades include 14 All-Star selections, five Gold Glove Awards, five Silver Slugger Awards, two Hank Aaron Awards, and a Roberto Clemente Award. Jeter was the 28th player to reach 3,000 hits and finished his career ranked sixth in MLB history in career hits and first among shortstops. In 2017, the Yankees retired his uniform number 2.
The Yankees drafted Jeter out of high school in 1992, and he debuted in the major leagues at age 21 in 1995. The following year, he became the Yankees' starting shortstop, won the Rookie of the Year Award, and helped push the team to win the 1996 World Series. Jeter continued to play during the team's championship seasons of 1998–2000; he finished third in voting for the American League (AL) Most Valuable Player (MVP) Award in 1998, recorded multiple career-high numbers in 1999, and won both the All-Star Game MVP and World Series MVP Awards in 2000. He consistently placed among the AL leaders in hits and runs scored for most of his career, and served as the Yankees' team captain from 2003 until his retirement in 2014. Throughout his career, Jeter contributed reliably to the Yankees' franchise successes. He holds many postseason records, and has a .321 batting average in the World Series. Jeter has earned the nicknames "Captain Clutch" and "Mr. November" due to his outstanding play in the postseason.
Jeter was one of the most heavily marketed athletes of his generation and is involved in numerous product endorsements. As a celebrity, his personal life and relationships with other celebrities has drawn the attention of the media.Durwood Merrill
Edwin Durwood Merrill (March 12, 1938 – January 11, 2003) was an American umpire in Major League Baseball (MLB) who worked in the American League for 23 seasons (1977-1999).
Merrill was born in Cloud Chief, Oklahoma. In 1998 he wrote a collection of his experiences called You're Out and You're Ugly, Too!.Eric Davis (baseball)
Eric Keith Davis (born May 29, 1962) is an American former center fielder for several Major League Baseball (MLB) teams, most notably the Cincinnati Reds, to which he owes his nickname Eric the Red. Davis was 21 years old when he made his major league debut with the Reds on May 19, 1984. Davis spent eight seasons with the Reds and later played for the Los Angeles Dodgers, Detroit Tigers, Baltimore Orioles, St. Louis Cardinals, and San Francisco Giants. A right-handed batter and fielder, Davis was blessed with a mesmerizing combination of athletic ability, including excellent foot and bat speed, tremendous power, and superlative defensive acumen. He became one of baseball's most exciting players during his peak, achieving a number of rare feats. In 1987, he became the first player in major league history to hit three grand slams in one month and the first to achieve at least 30 home runs and 50 stolen bases in the same season.
A native of Los Angeles, California, the Reds selected Davis in the eighth round of the 1980 amateur draft from John C. Fremont High School in South Los Angeles, where he was a heavily recruited college basketball prospect. In his major league career, he often sustained injuries while winning two MLB All-Star Game selections, three Rawlings Gold Glove Awards and two Silver Slugger Awards. Over a 162-game period spanning June 11, 1986, to July 4, 1987, he batted .308, .406 on-base percentage, .622 slugging percentage with 47 home runs, 149 runs scored, 123 runs batted in (RBI) and 98 stolen bases. In 1990, he became a World Series champion in the Reds' upset and four-game sweep of the Oakland Athletics.
A series of injuries derailed what seemed to be an even more promising career as he moved to the Dodgers and then the Tigers, and he retired in 1994. In 1996, Davis successfully restarted his baseball career with the Reds and was named the comeback player of the year. He moved to the Orioles and, despite fighting colon cancer, he had one of his best statistical seasons in 1998. Injuries again slowed Davis over the next few seasons, and he retired for good in 2001.
Along with other business interests, Davis currently works as a roving instructor in the Reds organization.Fox Major League Baseball
Fox Major League Baseball (shortened to Fox MLB and also known as Major League Baseball on Fox, MLB on Fox, or MLB on FS1) is a presentation of Major League Baseball (MLB) games produced by Fox Sports, the sports division of the Fox Broadcasting Company (Fox), since June 1, 1996. The broadcaster has aired the World Series in 1996, 1998 and every edition since 2000, and the All-Star Game in 1997, 1999, and every year since 2001. It has also aired the National League Championship Series (NLCS) and American League Championship Series (ALCS) in alternate years from 1996 to 2000, both series from 2001 to 2006, and again in alternate years since 2007, with the NLCS in even years and the ALCS in odd years. Under its current contract with MLB, Fox Sports will continue to carry MLB telecasts through at least the 2021 season, with national broadcasts on Fox and cable sports network Fox Sports 1.Mike Mussina
Michael Cole Mussina (born December 8, 1968), nicknamed "Moose", is an American former baseball starting pitcher who played 18 seasons in Major League Baseball (MLB) for the Baltimore Orioles (1991–2000) and the New York Yankees (2001–2008). In 2019, he was elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame in his sixth year of eligibility.
Mussina spent his entire career in the American League East, won at least 11 games in 17 consecutive seasons – an American League record – and recorded a career .638 winning percentage. Among pitchers, he ranks 33rd in all-time wins (270), 33rd in games started (535), 66th in innings pitched (3,562.2), 19th in strikeouts (2,813), and 23rd all-time in pitching Wins Above Replacement (82.9). A five-time All-Star and seven-time Gold Glove winner, Mussina's consistency resulted in six top-five finishes in the voting for his league's Cy Young Award.Tim McCarver
James Timothy McCarver (born October 16, 1941) is an American sportscaster and former professional baseball catcher.
McCarver played for the St. Louis Cardinals, Philadelphia Phillies, Montreal Expos, and Boston Red Sox between 1959 and 1980. He appeared in the MLB All-Star Game in 1966 and 1967, and was the starting catcher for the World Series champion St. Louis Cardinals in 1964 and 1967.
After his playing career ended, McCarver began a career as a broadcaster, most notably for Fox Sports. McCarver called a then-record 23 World Series and 20 All-Star Games. He was the recipient of the 2012 Ford C. Frick Award for broadcasting.
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|National League teams|