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David Ortiz 2004 ALCS Game Four walk-off home run

Book Review – Don’t Let Us Win Tonight

Don't Let Us Win Tonight

Don’t Let Us Win Tonight, written by Allan Wood and Bill Nowlin

If you are going to recap one of the greatest seasons in Boston Red Sox history and one of the most improbable comebacks in baseball history, why rehash box scores and the play-by-play that are easily found through an Internet search? Why not get the story straight from the people who experienced it firsthand?

This is the heart of Don’t Let Us Win Tonight, authored by Allan Wood and Bill Nowlin. While the authors set the stage in bringing us back ten years to that magical 2004 postseason, the story unfolds through the words of the players, the manager, the front office, the medical staff, the opposition, and even the bat boy. Nearly every moment is captured, beginning with a quick summary of the season, followed by a recap of each postseason game, and finally to the championship parade that wove through the streets of Boston at the end.

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    Featured Player - Koji Uehara

    Born: 3 April 1975 in Osaka, Japan
    College: None
    Signed in 2009 by the Baltimore Orioles

    Fun Fact: The Japanese-born Uehara pitched with the Yomiuri Giants for 10 seasons in the Central League in Nippon Professional Baseball (NPB). He was twice honored with the Eiji Sawamure Award as the top starting pitcher in NPB. Former teammates include Hideki Matsui, Hideki Okajima, Gabe Kapler, and John Wasdin. ...more on Koji Uehara.

    Other Red Sox players: Shane Victorino, Junichi Tazawa, Jon Lester

    Red Sox Legend - Roger Clemens

    Years with Boston: 1984-1996
    Position: Pitcher

    Fun Fact: Clemens is the only player to have won League Most Valuable Player, Cy Young, and All-Star MVP honors in the same season (1986). Clemens is also the only Red Sox pitcher to take home league MVP honors. ...more on Roger Clemens.

    Other Red Sox legends: Tris Speaker, Fred Lynn, Bill Carrigan

    This Week in Red Sox History

    28 July 1959 - Earl Wilson becomes the first African American player to pitch for the Red Sox, throwing a scoreless inning in a 5-3 loss in the opener of a doubleheader in Cleveland.

    28 July 1965 - An errant pitch strikes right fielder Tony Conigliaro in the wrist during Boston's 6-0 win and forces the young slugger to miss 24 games.

    28 July 1979 - Boston executes its third triple play of the season to tie a mark held by eight other teams, including the 1924 Red Sox, as Dennis Eckersley shuts out the Rangers 1-0 in Arlington.

    28 July 2011 - Dustin Pedroia extends his hitting streak to 25 games with a solo home run in the eighth inning of a 4-3 loss to the White Sox in Chicago. The Red Sox second baseman goes 0-for-4 the next night to end the streak.

    28 July 2013 - Former Red Sox first baseman George Scott passes away at the age of 69 in Greenville, Mississippi.

    29 July 1903 - Patsy Dougherty becomes the first player in franchise history to hit for the cycle but Boston loses 15-14 to New York at Huntington Avenue Grounds, with Cy Young giving up all 15 runs.

    29 July 1911 - Smoky Joe Wood throws a no-hitter in a 5-0 win for the Red Sox over the St. Louis Browns.

    29 July 1988 - Playing both ends of a doubleheader, Jody Reed collects seven hits in nine at-bats as Boston sweeps Milwaukee at Fenway Park.

    29 July 1990 - The Red Sox collect 12 doubles in one game, an American League record, in a 13-3 win over the Tigers in Detroit.

    29 July 2003 - Switch-hitter Bill Mueller becomes the first player in history to hit grand slams from both sides of the plate in one game as the Red Sox third baseman hits three home runs and drives home nine in a 14-7 win over the Rangers in Texas.

    30 July 1936 - The Red Sox become the first American League team and second major league club to travel by airplane when they charter a flight from St. Louis to Chicago.

    30 July 1991 - Carlos Quintana ties an American League record by driving in six runs in one inning as Boston crushes Texas 11-6 at Fenway Park. A grand slam off old friend Oil Can Boyd in the third inning is followed later in the same frame with a two-run double off Wayne Rosenthal.

    30 July 2011 - The Red Sox bat around in the fifth and ninth innings of a 10-2 win over the White Sox in Chicago.

    30 July 2012 - In a moment of frustration, right fielder Ryan Sweeney ends his season when he punches a door in the dugout after his eighth inning at-bat, fracturing his left knuckle, in a 7-3 Red Sox win over the Tigers at Fenway Park.

    31 July 1959 - Three days after his debut, Earl Wilson makes his first major league start, pitching 3-2/3 hitless innings but allowing nine walks in an eventual 6-5 Red Sox win in Detroit.

    31 July 1997 - The Red Sox perhaps make the best deal in franchise history when they send Heathcliff Slocumb to the Mariners in exchange for future All-Stars Jason Varitek and Derek Lowe.

    31 July 2004 - Nomar Garciaparra departs after seven-plus seasons in Boston, traded to Chicago in a blockbuster four-team deal that brings shortstop Orlando Cabrera and first baseman Doug Mientkiewicz to the Red Sox.

    31 July 2006 - For the second time in three days, designated hitter David Ortiz hits a game-winning hit, this time a three-run home run in the ninth inning, as Boston beats Cleveland, 9-8. It marked the fourth time this season and the 12th time in his Red Sox career that Ortiz had ended a game with a walk-off hit. Ortiz also ties a club record with his 14th home run for the month.

    31 July 2008 - Outfielder Manny Ramirez is traded to the Dodgers as part of a three-team deal while the Red Sox receive outfielder Jason Bay from the Pittsburgh Pirates.

    31 July 2013 - The Red Sox win 5-4 over the Mariners in 15 innings thanks to a two-out, bases-loaded single from Stephen Drew. Boston's 10th walk-off win of the season vaults the Sox back into first place in the American League East.

    1 August 1962 - Five weeks after Earl Wilson's feat, Bill Monbouquette throws the second Red Sox no-hitter of the season at Comisky Park as Boston bests Chicago, 1-0.

    1 August 1973 - Boston defeats New York 3-2 at Fenway Park in a game that features a brawl that begins when Yankees backstop Thurman Munson barrels into Carlton Fisk hard at home plate; both players come up swinging and are eventually ejected.

    1 August 2013 - The Red Sox rally from a 7-1 deficit to win 8-7 over the Mariners at Fenway Park. Boston score six times in the bottom of the ninth and wins it when Daniel Nava, in his second at-bat of the inning, hits a one-out single over the head of the drawn-in center fielder. It is Boston's 11th and final walk-off win of the season.

    2 August 1940 - Joe Cronin hits for the cycle in a 12-9 Red Sox victory over the Tigers in Detroit.

    2 August 2009 - Boston bangs out 23 hits in an 18-10 win over Baltimore at Camden Yards. Eight different Red Sox players have multiple-hit games, including newcomer Victor Martinez, who goes 5-for-6 with a double and four RBI.

    3 August 2010 - Mike Lowell, in his first at-bat coming off the disabled list, hits a two-run home run over the Green Monster at Fenway Park on the first pitch as the Red Sox roll to a 3-1 win over the Indians.

    3 August 2011 - For the second night in a row, Jacoby Ellsbury knocks home the game-winning run in the ninth inning of a 4-3 win for the Red Sox over the Indians. While last night's win was the result of a single to center field that scored pinch runner Jarrod Saltalamacchia from second for a 3-2 win for Boston, tonight he hits a solo home run to dead center to send the Fenway Park crowd home happy. They are the first two walk-off hits of his young career.

    Fenway Park Feature - Pesky Pole

    Fun Fact: The Pesky Pole was not officially given that name by the club until the 2006 season in honor of namesake Johnny Pesky's 87th birthday celebration. ...more on the Pesky Pole.

    Other Fenway Park features: The Lone Red Seat, Manual Scoreboard, Center Field Triangle