2001 American League Championship Series
The 2001 American League Championship Series (ALCS) was a rematch of the 2000 ALCS between the New York Yankees, who had come off a dramatic comeback against the Oakland Athletics in the Division Series after being down two games to zero, and the Seattle Mariners, who had won their Division Series against the Cleveland Indians in five games. The series had additional poignancy, coming immediately after downtown New York City was devastated by the events of September 11, 2001 (the series was played in late October due to Major League Baseball temporarily shutting down in the wake of the attacks).
|2001 American League Championship Series|
|MVP||Andy Pettitte (New York)|
|Umpires||Ed Montague, Wally Bell, Gary Cederstrom, Charlie Reliford, John Shulock, Tim Welke|
|TV announcers||Thom Brennaman and Steve Lyons (Games 1–2)|
Joe Buck and Tim McCarver (Games 3–5)
|Radio announcers||Jon Miller and Joe Morgan|
Though the Mariners had won an American League record 116 regular season games (tying the major league record established by the 1906 Chicago Cubs), and had home field advantage, the Yankees won the first two games in Seattle. The Mariners' manager, former Yankee player and manager Lou Piniella, guaranteed after Game 2 that the Mariners would win at least two of the next three games in New York to return the series to Seattle. But the Yankees closed out the series in New York, beating the Mariners four games to one. The series ended with a 12–3 Yankees victory in Game 5, and the Yankees made their fourth consecutive World Series appearance, where they would go on to lose to the Arizona Diamondbacks in the World Series.
Seattle Mariners vs. New York YankeesEdit
New York won the series, 4–1.
|1||October 17||New York Yankees – 4, Seattle Mariners – 2||Safeco Field||3:06||47,644|
|2||October 18||New York Yankees – 3, Seattle Mariners – 2||Safeco Field||3:25||47,791|
|3||October 20||Seattle Mariners – 14, New York Yankees – 3||Yankee Stadium (I)||3:49||56,517|
|4||October 21||Seattle Mariners – 1, New York Yankees – 3||Yankee Stadium (I)||3:24||56,375|
|5||October 22||Seattle Mariners – 3, New York Yankees – 12||Yankee Stadium (I)||3:18||56,370|
|WP: Andy Pettitte (1–0) LP: Aaron Sele (0–1) Sv: Mariano Rivera (1)|
NYY: Paul O'Neill (1)
Game 1's starting date was the latest ever for a League Championship series. The Yankees took a 1–0 lead on a Chuck Knoblauch single that scored Jorge Posada in the second off of Aaron Sele, then increased it to 3–0 on a Paul O'Neill two-run home run in the fourth. The Mariners got on the board on a John Olerud groundout that scored Edgar Martínez in the fifth off of Andy Pettitte. The score remained 3–1 until the ninth when the Yankees increased their lead to 4–1 off of Jose Paniagua on a David Justice single that scored Alfonso Soriano, who singled and stole second. The Mariners got that run back in the bottom of the inning when Mariano Rivera threw a wild pitch to Bret Boone that scored Ichiro Suzuki, who doubled with one-out and went to third on another wild pitch, but Rivera retired Boone and the next batter, Edgar Martínez, to end the game.
|WP: Mike Mussina (1–0) LP: Freddy García (0–1) Sv: Mariano Rivera (2)|
SEA: Stan Javier (1)
In Game 2, the Yankees took a 2–0 lead in the second against Freddy García on a Scott Brosius double that scored Tino Martinez and Jorge Posada, who singled and walked, respectively. Brosius would then score on a Chuck Knoblauch single two batters later to make it 3–0 Yankees. The Mariners responded in the fourth on a two-run home run from Stan Javier off of Mike Mussina after Mike Cameron was hit by a pitch to make it a one-run game. But neither team scored thereafter and the Yankees took a 2–0 series lead to New York City.
This remains the last MLB post-season game played in Seattle to date.
|WP: Jamie Moyer (1–0) LP: Orlando Hernández (0–1)|
SEA: John Olerud (1), Bret Boone (1), Jay Buhner (1)
NYY: Bernie Williams (1)
The Yankees jumped to a 2–0 lead in the first on a Bernie Williams two-run home run off of Jamie Moyer after David Justice walked. But they did not score again until the eighth on a David Justice RBI single off of Jose Paniagua. Orlando Hernández pitched four shutout innings before letting the Mariners load the bases on two walks and a single in the fifth. Bret Boone's single scored two to tie the game. Next inning, John Olerud's lead off home run put the Mariners up 3−2, their first lead in the series. After allowing a single and walk, Hernández was relieved by Mike Stanton. An error allowed another run to score and put runners on second and third. After David Bell flied out, Ichiro Suzuki was intentionally walked to load the bases and Mark McLemore cleared them with a triple. Mark Wohlers relieved Stanton and gave up a two-run home run to Boone to make it 9−2. Next inning, with runners on first and third on a walk and error, Bell's single scored Cameron. Jay Witasick relieved Wohlers and, after getting two outs, allowed an RBI single to Boone. Next inning, Stan Javier hit a leadoff single, moved to third on two ground outs, and scored on Bell's single off of Witasick. In the ninth, Witasick allowed a one-out home run to Jay Buhner, then a triple to Al Martin, who scored on Olerud's single. John Halama retired the Yankees in order in the bottom of the inning as the Mariners cruised to a 14–3 win and a guaranteed Game 5.
|WP: Mariano Rivera (1–0) LP: Kazuhiro Sasaki (0–1)|
SEA: Bret Boone (2)
NYY: Bernie Williams (2), Alfonso Soriano (1)
Game 4 remained scoreless until Bret Boone hit a home run off Yankees reliever Ramiro Mendoza in the top of the eighth to give the Mariners a 1–0 lead, but the Yankees responded in the bottom of the inning with a Bernie Williams home run off Arthur Rhodes to tie the game. Mariano Rivera pitched a scoreless ninth and the Yankees won the game 3–1 in the bottom of the inning on an Alfonso Soriano two-run home run after Scott Brosius singled off Kazuhiro Sasaki to take a 3–1 series lead. Before the eighth, each team only had one hit in the game, John Olerud's leadoff single in the fourth off of Roger Clemens for the Mariners and Tino Martinez's ground-rule double off of Norm Charlton in the sixth for the Yankees. The Mariners issued 10 walks while the Yankees issued five.
|WP: Andy Pettitte (2–0) LP: Aaron Sele (0–2)|
NYY: Bernie Williams (3), Paul O'Neill (2), Tino Martinez (1)
In the bottom of the third inning of Game 5, an error by Mariner third baseman David Bell allowed Scott Brosius to reach base. Alfonso Soriano then singled and both men advanced a base on Chuck Knoblauch's sacrifice bunt. Derek Jeter's sacrifice fly and David Justice's double scored a run each, then Bernie Williams capped the scoring with a two-run home run off Aaron Sele, all four runs unearned. Paul O'Neill homered in the fourth to put the Yankees on top 5–0. In the sixth, Mariners reliever John Halama allowed three straight leadoff singles to load the bases. Joel Piñeiro relieved him and struck out Brosius, but then threw a wild pitch to Soriano to let one run score. Soriano walked to reload the bases before Knoblauch's single, Jeter's walk, and Justice's single scored a run each. The Mariners got their only three runs of the game in the seventh when they loaded the bases on three singles with one out, then a single by Bell scored two followed by a single by Ichiro Suzuki scoring another off of Andy Pettitte. In the bottom of the eighth, Tino Martinez hit a three-run home run off of José Paniagua and Mariano Rivera pitched a scoreless ninth as the Yankees cruised to a 12–3 win to advance to the World Series for the fourth straight year.
|New York Yankees||2||4||4||3||0||4||0||5||3||25||42||4|
|Total attendance: 264,697 Average attendance: 52,939|
— FOX Sports Joe Buck calling Alfonso Soriano's dramatic walk-off home run in Game 4.
Before you guys start asking questions let me start by saying We're gonna be back here (Seattle) for Game 6, I told the people out there the same thing, I guarantee you we will be back here for Game 6.— Mariners manager Lou Piniella in a press conference after their Game 2 loss.
The Yankees' streak of consecutive World Series wins ended at three, as they fell to the Arizona Diamondbacks in the World Series in seven games. They made the World Series again in 2003, but lost to the underdog Florida Marlins. The Yankees did not win another World Series until 2009.
The Mariners' 116 wins in the regular season remain the most of an American League team and tied with the 1906 Cubs as the most in the MLB. Despite their success, they have not made the postseason since 2001, which is the longest active drought in all of the four major North American professional sports.
- "2001 ALCS Game 1 - New York Yankees vs. Seattle Mariners". Retrosheet. Retrieved September 13, 2009.
- "2001 ALCS Game 2 - New York Yankees vs. Seattle Mariners". Retrosheet. Retrieved September 13, 2009.
- "2001 ALCS Game 3 - Seattle Mariners vs. New York Yankees". Retrosheet. Retrieved September 13, 2009.
- "2001 ALCS Game 4 - Seattle Mariners vs. New York Yankees". Retrosheet. Retrieved September 13, 2009.
- "2001 ALCS Game 5 - Seattle Mariners vs. New York Yankees". Retrosheet. Retrieved September 13, 2009.