RED SOX 2, INDIANS 0
Tuesday, August 8, 1978 at Fenway Park
Game 1480 – 9/24/15
Back-to-back RBI doubles by Jerry Remy and Jim Rice broke a scoreless tie in the fifth, good for the game’s only scoring, and Luis Tiant went the distance to record his first shutout of the season, as the Red Sox blanked the Indians 2-0 in front of a ‘Joe Walsh Day II’ crowd at Fenway.
Tiant (11-9) held the Tribe to just five hits, all singles, and allowed just one runner to reach third base, when former teammate Bernie Carbo led off the fourth with a base hit, advanced to second on a walk, and moved to third on a fielder’s choice. But he was left stranded when both Tom Veryzer and Ron Pruitt were retired on infield fly outs to end the frame.
Meanwhile, Cleveland starter Don Hood (5-6) was doing a satisfactory job of shutting down the Sox, holding them scoreless through four, thanks in part to center fielder Rick Manning’s pinpoint throw to home in the first, which nailed Remy trying to score from second on a single from Rice. But a two-out walk to Rick Burleson in the fifth spelled doom for Hood, as Remy and Rice followed with their run-scoring doubles to give Boston the lead, and eventual 2-0 win.
Cleveland’s offense, one of the best in the American League, was perhaps hampered by an injury to Jim Norris, batting .351 through July, who took an inside pitch from Tiant off his wrist in the first inning, and left the game with what was later diagnosed as a bruising of the scaphoid area. The injury was severe enough to keep Norris out of action for the final two games of the series, and from there his status will be determined on a day-to-day basis.
Remy was the game’s hits leader, going 3-for-4 with a double, an RBI, and a run scored, while Fred Lynn contributed to Boston’s nine total hits with a double and triple. Tribe outfielders Horace Speed and Danny Briggs, who filled in for Norris after his injury, went a combined 0-for-2 with a walk for the night.
• The game was played at night at site AZ15 in Peoria, Arizona, on the living room table while I listened to But Seriously, Folks… by Joe Walsh on my HP Mini laptop.
• This was the 40th game played at site AZ15, at the time good for 12th place on the all-time games hosted list.
• This was the second game ever played on this date, and the first since 2012.
• The second ‘Joe Walsh Day’ was celebrated throughout both the NL and AL today, honoring the date when his album But Seriously, Folks… went platinum in 1978. The first celebration took place on May 31st, when the album went gold.
• The scheduled date of this game had been moved back a day to August 7th, to accommodate the number of SP78 games needed for the baseball trip my friend Steve P and I took to New England in 2015. But with the trip cut short, the game wasn’t played, and I moved it back to August 8th.
• Jim Norris ended up missing just five games after injuring his wrist due to today’s HBP.
• In the photo above, a cassette tape of But Seriously, Folks… can be seen on the table, ready to be listened to for ‘Joe Walsh Day II’. At game time, however, I discovered my portable cassette player wouldn’t work, so I had to listen to a digital version on my laptop computer instead. Five years later, I’d completely forget the player was broke, and would take it and the same cassette tape to Cincinnati for the SP78 40th Anniversary game…where, of course, the player once again wouldn’t work.
• My friend Bob can also be seen in the photo, sitting in the center field bleacher seats cheering on the Sox, with a ticket like this one in his pocket.