1998 American League Division Series

1998 American League Division Series
Team (Wins) Manager Season
New York Yankees (3) Joe Torre 114–48, .704, GA: 22
Texas Rangers (0) Johnny Oates 88–74, .543, GA: 3
Dates September 29 – October 2
Television Fox (Game 1)
NBC (Games 2–3)
TV announcers Joe Buck, Tim McCarver and Bob Brenly (Game 1)
Bob Costas and Joe Morgan (Games 2–3)
Radio ESPN
Radio announcers Dan Shulman and Buck Martinez
Team (Wins) Manager Season
Cleveland Indians (3) Mike Hargrove 89–73, .549, GA: 9
Boston Red Sox (1) Jimy Williams 92–70, .568, GB: 22
Dates September 29 – October 3
Television ESPN (Games 1–3)
Fox (Game 4)
TV announcers Chris Berman and Ray Knight (Games 1–3)
Joe Buck and Tim McCarver (Game 4)
Radio ESPN
Radio announcers Ernie Harwell and Dave Campbell
Umpires Jim Joyce, Rich Garcia, Tim Tschida, Drew Coble, Terry Craft (Yankees–Rangers, Games 1–2; Indians–Red Sox, Games 3–4)
Durwood Merrill (Yankees–Rangers, Games 1–2; Indians–Red Sox, Game 3)
Dale Scott, Joe Brinkman, John Hirschbeck, Larry McCoy, Dave Phillips (Indians–Red Sox, Games 1–2; Yankees–Rangers, Game 3)
Chuck Meriwether (Indians–Red Sox, Games 1–2,4)

The 1998 American League Division Series (ALDS), the opening round of the 1998 American League playoffs, began on Tuesday, September 29, and ended on Saturday, October 3, with the champions of the three AL divisions—along with a "wild card" team—participating in two best-of-five series. The teams were:

The higher seed (in parentheses) had the home field advantage, which for the first time was determined by playing record. Also for the first time, the team with home field advantage played the first two games at home, with potentially Game 5 at home as well; previously, the team with the home field advantage had played the first two games on the road, with the possibility of the final three games at home. The Red Sox were ineligible for home field advantage due to not winning their division.

The New York Yankees and Cleveland Indians went on to meet in the AL Championship Series (ALCS). The Yankees became the American League champion, and defeated the National League champion San Diego Padres in the 1998 World Series.


New York Yankees vs. Texas Rangers

New York won the series, 3–0.

1September 29Texas Rangers – 0, New York Yankees – 2Yankee Stadium (I)3:0257,362[1] 
2September 30Texas Rangers – 1, New York Yankees – 3Yankee Stadium (I)2:5857,360[2] 
3October 2New York Yankees – 4, Texas Rangers – 0The Ballpark in Arlington2:5849,450[3]

Cleveland Indians vs. Boston Red Sox

Cleveland won the series, 3–1.

1September 29Boston Red Sox – 11, Cleveland Indians – 3Jacobs Field3:1645,185[4] 
2September 30Boston Red Sox – 5, Cleveland Indians – 9Jacobs Field3:2545,229[5] 
3October 2Cleveland Indians – 4, Boston Red Sox – 3Fenway Park2:2733,114[6] 
4October 3Cleveland Indians – 2, Boston Red Sox – 1Fenway Park3:0033,537[7]

New York vs. Texas

Game 1, September 29

Yankee Stadium (I) in Bronx, New York

New York02000000X260
WP: David Wells (1–0)   LP: Todd Stottlemyre (0–1)   Sv: Mariano Rivera (1)

Scott Brosius was the hero of Game 1, as Todd Stottlemyre faced David Wells. In the bottom of the second, Stottlemyre yielded two runs when Brosius singled in Jorge Posada after Chad Curtis doubled and Curtis scored when Chuck Knoblauch struck out and Brosius was caught stealing. Stottlemyre pitched a complete game in a losing effort. David Wells and Mariano Rivera limited the loaded Texas lineup, which had scored 940 runs in 1998, to only five hits.

Game 2, September 30

Yankee Stadium (I) in Bronx, New York

New York01020000X380
WP: Andy Pettitte (1–0)   LP: Rick Helling (0–1)   Sv: Mariano Rivera (2)
Home runs:
TEX: None
NYY: Shane Spencer (1), Scott Brosius (1)

Rick Helling went against Andy Pettitte in Game 2. The remarkable Shane Spencer started the scoring when he homered in the bottom of the second. Brosius then hit a two-run homer in the Yankees fourth. Texas scored their only run of the series when Juan González doubled and later scored on an Iván Rodríguez single in the fifth. Once again, the Rangers were limited to five hits by Pettitte, Jeff Nelson, and Rivera.

Game 3, October 2

The Ballpark in Arlington in Arlington, Texas

New York000004000491
WP: David Cone (1–0)   LP: Aaron Sele (0–1)
Home runs:
NYY: Paul O'Neill (1), Shane Spencer (2)
TEX: None

The Rangers were once again stymied by the Yankees pitching staff. Twenty-game winner David Cone faced Aaron Sele, and both were matching each other pitch-for-pitch into the sixth. Paul O'Neill put the Yankees on top by hitting a home run with one out in the Yankees sixth. Then, with two runners on and two out, Shane Spencer slammed his second home run of the series to make it 4–0. Cone left after a rain delay, but the Yankees' bullpen held Texas in check the rest of the way. Will Clark grounded out to end the series.

Composite box

1998 ALDS (3–0): New York Yankees over Texas Rangers

New York Yankees0302040009231
Texas Rangers0000100001131
Total attendance: 164,172   Average attendance: 54,724

Cleveland vs. Boston

Game 1, September 29

Jacobs Field in Cleveland, Ohio

WP: Pedro Martínez (1–0)   LP: Jaret Wright (0–1)
Home runs:
BOS: Mo Vaughn 2 (2), Nomar Garciaparra (1)
CLE: Kenny Lofton (1), Jim Thome (1)

The first of many rough starts for Cleveland pitcher Jaret Wright in the 1998 postseason was in Game 1. Wright faced Pedro Martínez, and Pedro would get all the run support in the world. After leadoff hits in the first by Darren Lewis and John Valentin, Mo Vaughn slugged a three-run home run to put Boston up for good. In the top of the fifth, with Lewis and Valentin on and one out, Nomar Garciaparra also slugged a three-run home run. Jaret's night was done. A one-out single in the top of the sixth by Valentin led to Vaughn's second home run of the game to put Boston up 8–0. Cleveland responded with a two-run home run by Kenny Lofton in the bottom half of the sixth and a Thome home run in the seventh. Vaughn doubled in two more runs in the eighth as the Red Sox scored three more runs to make the final score 11–3. The win ended a thirteen-game postseason losing streak for the Red Sox dating back to Game 6 of the 1986 World Series.

Game 2, September 30

Jacobs Field in Cleveland, Ohio

WP: Dave Burba (1–0)   LP: Tim Wakefield (0–1)   Sv: Mike Jackson (1)
Home runs:
BOS: None
CLE: David Justice (1)

Dwight Gooden faced Tim Wakefield in Game 2. The Red Sox scored two runs in a controversial first inning surrounding home plate umpire Joe Brinkman. After calling the first three pitches that appeared to be strikes as balls, Indians' manager Mike Hargrove was promptly ejected from the game by Brinkman. Later that same inning, with two runners aboard, Nomar Garciaparra doubled off the left-field wall. Darren Lewis scored as John Valentin tried to score on a slide. Omar Vizquel's relay throw appeared to be time to get Valentin, but Brinkman called him safe. Gooden had a meltdown at home plate and had to be restrained by his teammates as he also was ejected. Replays confirmed Valentin was out at the plate. Gooden was replaced by Dave Burba, who promptly retired the next two batters. David Justice cut the lead in half by hitting a sacrifice fly that scored Lofton in the Indians first. Then the Indians tied it when Sandy Alomar Jr. doubled in Brian Giles in the second. After Joey Cora walked, Lofton doubled in Alomar to give the Indians the lead. Wakefield left the game and, with two out, David Justice hit a three-run home run to put the Indians up for good. Garciaparra drove in a run for Boston in the third, but an Alomar double scored Travis Fryman to make it 7–3. The Red Sox came within two in the sixth, but the Indians scored one in the bottom half and one in the eighth on a wild pitch. That made the final score 9–5 Indians.

Game 3, October 2

Fenway Park in Boston, Massachusetts

WP: Charles Nagy (1–0)   LP: Bret Saberhagen (0–1)   Sv: Mike Jackson (2)
Home runs:
CLE: Jim Thome (2), Kenny Lofton (2), Manny Ramírez 2 (2)
BOS: Nomar Garciaparra (2)

Charles Nagy faced Bret Saberhagen in the critical Game 3. The Red Sox struck first on an RBI-forceout in the fourth. It didn't take long to respond, as Jim Thome led the Indians fifth off with a home run. In the sixth, Kenny Lofton homered to put the Indians on top. Then Manny Ramírez homered in the seventh to give the Indians a 3–1 edge. Manny Ramírez would homer once again in the ninth, this time off Dennis Eckersley. The Red Sox wouldn't go quietly in the bottom of the ninth as Nomar Garciaparra hit a two-run home run to bring the game within one run. However, Mike Jackson retired the next two batters in succession to give the Indians a two games to one lead in the series.

Game 4, October 3

Fenway Park in Boston, Massachusetts

WP: Steve Reed (1–0)   LP: Tom Gordon (0–1)   Sv: Mike Jackson (3)
Home runs:
CLE: None
BOS: Nomar Garciaparra (3)

Bartolo Colón went against Pete Schourek, looking to save the Red Sox. In the fourth, Nomar Garciaparra homered to lead off to put the Red Sox up 1–0, but they would squander the lead for the third consecutive game. In the eighth, with Tom Gordon pitching for Boston, Kenny Lofton and Omar Vizquel both singled with one out. Justice then doubled to center which scored both Lofton and Vizquel to put the Indians out in front 2–1. Not much happened afterwards, as Darren Bragg struck out swinging to end the series.

Composite box

1998 ALDS (3–1): Cleveland Indians over Boston Red Sox

Cleveland Indians15101423118261
Boston Red Sox50123403220340
Total attendance: 157,065   Average attendance: 39,266

Series quotes

Swing and a LONG drive into deep right field, Nixon back on the track at the wall...leaps up and GONE into the Boston bullpen!

Tom Hamilton's call of Kenny Lofton's home run in Game 3.


  1. "1998 ALDS - Texas Rangers vs. New York Yankees - Game 1". Retrosheet. Retrieved September 13, 2009.
  2. "1998 ALDS - Texas Rangers vs. New York Yankees - Game 2". Retrosheet. Retrieved September 13, 2009.
  3. "1998 ALDS - New York Yankees vs. Texas Rangers - Game 3". Retrosheet. Retrieved September 13, 2009.
  4. "1998 ALDS - Boston Red Sox vs. Cleveland Indians - Game 1". Retrosheet. Retrieved September 13, 2009.
  5. "1998 ALDS - Boston Red Sox vs. Cleveland Indians - Game 2". Retrosheet. Retrieved September 13, 2009.
  6. "1998 ALDS - Cleveland Indians vs. Boston Red Sox - Game 3". Retrosheet. Retrieved September 13, 2009.
  7. "1998 ALDS - Cleveland Indians vs. Boston Red Sox - Game 4". Retrosheet. Retrieved September 13, 2009.
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