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2000 American League Championship Series

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Template:Infobox LCS The 2000 American League Championship Series (ALCS) was a matchup between the East Division champion New York Yankees and the Wild Card Seattle Mariners. The Yankees had advanced to the Series after beating the West Division champion Oakland Athletics in the ALDS three games to two and the Mariners advanced by beating the Central Division champion Chicago White Sox three games to none. The Yankees won the Series four games to two and went on to defeat the New York Mets in the World Series to win their third consecutive World Series championship, 26th overall.

Summary[edit source | edit]

New York Yankees vs. Seattle Mariners[edit source | edit]

Template:MLB Playoff Summary

Game summaries[edit source | edit]

Game 1[edit source | edit]

Template:Linescore The opener at Yankee Stadium on a cool night was a pitchers' duel between Freddy García and Denny Neagle, and the game was scoreless through four innings. In the top of the fifth, Mark McLemore got Seattle's first hit, a two-out ground-rule double lined down the left field line, then scored on a Rickey Henderson single slapped to right field. Alex Rodriguez led off the sixth inning with a home run high off the left field foul pole's screen to give the M's another. In the bottom half, Chuck Knoblauch led off with a double and Derek Jeter walked; Paul O'Neill and Bernie Williams struck out, then David Justice flew out deep to center to end the threat. The Yankees outhit the Mariners by one, but could not score off García (6⅔ innings) and relievers José Paniagua, Arthur Rhodes, and Kazuhiro Sasaki; Seattle took the opener with a 2–0 shutout.[1]

Game 2[edit source | edit]

Template:Linescore Game 2 started just after 4 pm EDT, and the sun was difficult in the outfield for the first three innings. The Yankees' offense was again dead silent, this time against Mariner starter John Halama and reliever José Paniagua. In the first, New York loaded the bases (without a hit) and no outs, but could not score. Bernie Williams' ground ball went just inches and M's catcher Dan Wilson grabbed it, stepped on home, and threw to first for the double play; Tino Martinez then grounded out to second. In the top of the second, Seattle threatened with a leadoff walk by Edgar Martínez followed by a lunging single to center by John Olerud. Al Martin flew out to deep right center and the two advanced. David Bell lined the ball back to Orlando Hernández, who doubled up Olerud at second to end the inning.

Hernández pitched eight innings and gave up just one run, a Stan Javier single in the third that scored Mike Cameron, who had walked with two outs and stole second, after nearly being picked off at first. Hernández gave up six hits, but was set to get the loss until the Yankees' offense exploded in the eighth against Arthur Rhodes and José Mesa. David Justice led off with a double and scored on a single by Williams to tie the game, New York's first run in 21 innings. Back-to-back singles by Martinez and Jorge Posada then gave New York a 2–1 lead. Paul O'Neill then hit a sacrifice fly to score another. Mesa replaced Rhodes for Seattle and gave up a single to Luis Sojo. Posada was caught diving back to third for the second out on a safety squeeze; José Vizcaíno then doubled to left center to score Sojo from first to make it 4–1 Yankees. Vizcaíno went to third on a passed ball, scored on a Chuck Knoblauch single up the middle, and Derek Jeter sliced a homer to right to make it 7–1. Up again, Justice fouled off several and flew out to center to end the lengthy inning. Closer Mariano Rivera pitched a scoreless ninth: Olerud sliced a ground-rule double to lead off, but three ground balls ended the game; the series was tied at 1–1 and headed to Seattle.[2][3][4][5]

Game 3[edit source | edit]

Template:Linescore The Mariners struck first in Game 3 on three consecutive singles in the first, the last of which by Edgar Martínez off Andy Pettitte scored Mike Cameron from second. The Yankees responded with back-to-back home runs from Bernie Williams and Tino Martinez to lead off the second off Aaron Sele. The M's threatened with two on and no outs, but could not score. New York extended their lead to 3–1 in the third when Derek Jeter, who reached on a fielder's choice to avoid an inning-ending double play, scored on a double to left-center by David Justice.[6][7]

Seattle closed the deficit to one in the fifth when Rickey Henderson doubled to right-center and scored on a jammed single over shortstop from Cameron, but Alex Rodriguez flew high to left and Martínez grounded to shortstop (fielder's choice) to end the inning. The Yankees got that run right back in the sixth as Williams singled up the middle with one out and Martinez dribbled an infield single. Jorge Posada flew out deep to right and Williams advanced to third, then scored on Paul O'Neill's single to right; Luis Sojo flew to right for the third out. In the bottom of the eighth, Rodriguez singled and stole second, but Martínez struck out, and closer Mariano Rivera relieved Jeff Nelson. Pinch hitter Stan Javier grounded to third and John Olerud went to a full count then flew out to left.[6][7]

New York broke the game open with four runs in the ninth. O'Neill grounded out to first and Sojo singled up the middle; José Vizcaino entered as a pinch runner and stole second. Scott Brosius walked, and Vizcaino advanced to third on a wild pitch. Chuck Knoblauch hit an RBI single up the middle off of Brett Tomko, who then walked Jeter (after a lengthy at-bat) to load the bases. Lefthander Robert Ramsay relieved Tomko and allowed a two-run single to right by Justice and a sacrifice fly to left by Williams to make it 8–2. Rivera retired the Mariners in order for a five-out save as the Yankees went up 2−1 in the series.[6][7]

Game 4[edit source | edit]

Roger Clemens had 15 strikeouts while holding Seattle to one hit in Game 4.

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In one of the most dominant pitching performances in postseason history, Yankees starter Roger Clemens struck out 15 batters in a complete game one-hit shutout of the Mariners.[8] Clemens carried a no-hitter into the seventh inning when Al Martin lined a leadoff double off first baseman Tino Martinez's glove for the Mariners' only hit of the game. Clemens got offensive support when Derek Jeter hit a three-run home run off Paul Abbott in the fifth and David Justice hit a two-run home run off José Mesa in the eighth after a leadoff walk to Jeter. The Yankees won 5–0 and were just one win away from the World Series.

Clemens' 15 strikeouts matched the ALCS record set by Mike Mussina in Game 3 in 1997.[9] Fifteen strikeouts in a postseason game did not happen again until the 2019 ALDS, by Gerrit Cole of the Houston Astros.[10]

Game 5[edit source | edit]

Template:Linescore Facing elimination, the Mariners struck first in Game 5 on Sunday. After Rickey Henderson was caught looking, Yankee starter Denny Neagle walked three straight to load the bases in the bottom of the first; Mike Cameron scored on a sacrifice fly to right from John Olerud, then Jay Buhner struck out. The Yankees responded in the fourth when Tino Martinez doubled to right-center, Jorge Posada singled to left, and Paul O'Neill walked to load the bases with no outs. Luis Sojo hit a double to left-center off Freddy García that scored Martinez and Posada. Seattle escaped further damage as Scott Brosius flew out to third, Chuck Knoblauch struck out, and Derek Jeter grounded to shortstop.

Bernie Williams robbed Olerud of a home run in the bottom of the fourth, then hit a double to the wall in right center, where he stayed, as Martinez grounded to short, Posada walked, and O'Neill swung at a 3–0 pitch away and grounded into a fielder's choice to end the inning.

In the bottom of the fifth, Mark McLemore led off with a bunt single halfway to third, Henderson walked, and Cameron advanced them with a bunt down the first base line. Neagle was replaced with Jeff Nelson, who gave up a single to Alex Rodriguez through the hole to left that scored both runners for a 3–2 lead. With Rodriguez threatening to run at first, Edgar Martínez drove a 2–0 pitch over the center field wall and Olerud made it back-to-back on the next pitch with his own to right-center. With the Mariners up 6–2, Nelson was relieved by Jason Grimsley. Buhner singled down the first base line, David Bell popped out to center, and consecutive walks to Dan Wilson and McLemore loaded the bases; Dwight Gooden induced a soft infield fly from Henderson to end the inning.

Neither team scored afterwards, but in the seventh, Jeter led off with a walk and reliever José Paniagua was replaced by Arthur Rhodes. David Justice struck out, but Williams and Martinez walked to load the bases. With the tying run at the plate, Posada fanned and pinch hitter Glenallen Hill was caught looking. In the bottom of the inning, Olerud led off with a single, stole second, advanced to third on a ground ball, but was stranded. Rhodes struck out Sojo in the top of the eighth, but walked Brosius and was replaced by closer Kazuhiro Sasaki: Knoblauch fouled out to Olerud, Jeter lined a single to left, and Justice struck out. New York's David Cone retired the M's in order: McLemore and Raúl Ibañez both grounded out to second, while Cameron fouled out to Brosius. In the ninth, Sasaki hit Williams on an 0–2 count, who advanced to second on a wild pitch, then to third when Martinez grounded to second. Posada walked, pinch hitter Luis Polonia struck out, and Sojo flew to center, ending the game.

Neagle accounted for both New York losses in the series, as García defeated him twice. The Yankees left 15 runners on base in Game 5 and were 2 for 15 with runners in scoring position.[11][12] The Seattle win forced a sixth game at Yankee Stadium on Tuesday.

Game 6[edit source | edit]

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The Mariners again struck first in Game 6, taking a 2–0 lead in the first when Yankees starter Orlando Hernández walked Al Martin, then gave up back-to-back doubles to Alex Rodriguez and Edgar Martínez. Seattle made it 4–0 when Carlos Guillen hit a two-run home run in the fourth. The Yankees responded in the bottom of the inning when they loaded the bases before Jorge Posada hit a double off John Halama that scored David Justice and Bernie Williams. Posada then scored on a Paul O'Neil single to make it a one-run game.

The score stayed 4–3 until the bottom of the seventh, when New York put runners on first and third with one out off José Paniagua, who was replaced with Arthur Rhodes. Rhodes gave up a three-run home run to David Justice to give the Yankees a 6–4 lead. The bases were then loaded up with a single, double, and intentional walk before O'Neill's single scored two. José Mesa relieved Rhodes and walked Luis Sojo to reload the bases and Jose Vizcaino's sacrifice fly made it 9–4 Yankees. Alex Rodriguez led off the top of the eighth with a home run off Hernández. After walking Edgar Martínez, Hernández was replaced with Mariano Rivera, who gave up a double to John Olerud, then two outs later, another double to Mark McLemore that scored both Martinez and Olerud before striking out Jay Buhner to end the inning. Rivera then pitched a scoreless ninth as New York won 9–7 and advance to the World Series against the cross-town Mets.[13]

Composite box[edit source | edit]

2000 ALCS (4–2): New York Yankees over Seattle Mariners Template:Linescore

Television coverage[edit source | edit]

On September 26, 2000, NBC declined to renew its broadcast agreement with Major League Baseball. After 50 seasons — 1947–1989 and 1994–2000 — Game 6 is the last Major League Baseball game that NBC has televised to date. In Houston, due to the coverage of the 2000 Presidential Debate, KPRC-TV elected to carry NBC News' coverage of the debate while KNWS-TV carried NBC's final baseball game.

Aftermath[edit source | edit]

Alex Rodriguez left the Mariners for the Texas Rangers after this series for a ten-year, $252 million deal. Three seasons later, Rodriguez was traded to the Yankees, where he remained until 2016.

The Yankees went on to beat the New York Mets in five games in the first Subway Series since 1956.

The Mariners returned to the ALCS the following season, after they broke the Yankees' American League record and tied the Major League record for regular season wins with 116. However, they fared worse in a rematch with the Yankees and were dispatched in five games.

References[edit source | edit]

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External links[edit source | edit]

Template:2000 MLB Playoffs navbox