3. Game 1, 1999 ALCS
The Yankees put the Red Sox in their place for the first time in the modern era in Game 1 of the ’99 ALCS.
Entering the 1999 ALCS, the Yankees hadn’t dispatched of the Red Sox in October since 1978, and Boston entered this battle very much believing in themselves.
After all, they had Pedro Martinez at his absolute peak. Who wouldn’t be confident?
Luckily for the Yankees, it took every ounce of Pedro to get Boston out of a five-game ALDS battle with the Indians; his no-hit relief appearance was the difference in that hard-fought series.
Martinez going all-out demoted him to Game 3 of the ALCS, and left Kent Mercker in line to start Game 1 at Yankee Stadium. Oops! Still, somehow, Orlando Hernandez spotted him a three-run lead, with a wild error resulting in two first-inning runs for the Sox.
Rather than fold, New York leveraged their reputation, and stormed back late.
Scott Brosius smacked a two-run shot off Mercker in the second, and Derek Jeter evened things with an RBI single against Derek Lowe in the seventh. The NYY held serve until their first batter of extra innings, Bernie Williams, greeted Rod Beck accordingly.
The series was over right then and there. New York let Pedro do his thing in Game 3, a blowout loss, but won the series in 5. Chess match. Checkmate, Yankees.