Indians defeat Red Sox
3 games to 0
|Game||Date||Winning Team||Losing Team|
|1||Oct. 3||CLE 5||BOS 4|
|2||Oct. 4||CLE 4||BOS 0|
|3||Oct. 6||CLE 8||BOS 2|
Managers: Hargrove, Mike, CLE; Kennedy, Kevin, BOS
Path to the ALDS: Cleveland (100-44) won the AL Central by 30 games; Boston (86-58) won the AL East by seven games
After "running away from baseball for 40 years," as their former general manager John Hart remembers it, how good were his 1995 Indians? They played only 144 games, due to continued labor strife that delayed the start of the regular season, and they still reached the century mark in wins and posted a .694 winning percentage. Only the 1954 Indians, which were stunned by the Giants in the World Series, had a better record (111-43, .721) in club history. For what it's worth, that '54 club played 158 total games, including its (four-game) postseason to finish with a 111-47 (.703) combined record, while Mike Hargrove's 1995 Indians club would finish with a combined mark of 109-50 (.686).
Certainly, the 1995 Indians would have to work much harder for a title than the '54 crew, because this marked the first year that the Division Series and the Wild Card were added to the postseason format. Cleveland would need to beat the Red Sox, then the Mariners, and then the Braves, if it were to win it all.
For the Red Sox, who had lost the 1986 World Series in unthinkable fashion, it would be simply a creative new way to fall short of a title. Moreover, it would be the continuation of a hapless trend in the postseason, marking their third consecutive series without a win, following the ALCS sweeps by Oakland in 1988 and '90. Counting the last two games of the '86 World Series against the Mets, Boston's postseason losing streak would reach 13 by the end of this new ALDS.
The key hit in this series was in the 13th inning of Game 1 at Cleveland, which had been delayed by rain. Veteran Tony Pena had a 3-0 count, missed a take sign because he could not see it, and then hit what Hart calls a "3-0 Take in the Gloamin'" home run for the Indians' first postseason win since the 1948 clincher.