Postseason baseball makes its triumphant return to Cleveland after a 41-year hiatus and Indians fans get plenty of extra baseball as the Tribe walks off with a 5-4 win over the Boston Red Sox courtesy of a 13th inning home run from Tony Pena.
Five hours after the first pitch, Pena sends a 3-0 pitch into the bleachers in left for an improbable home run for the former Red Sox backstop off of reliever Zane Smith to give the crowd at Jacobs Field its first playoff victory since the final game of the 1948 World Series.
Cleveland fell behind, 2-0, in the third inning as Dennis Martinez gave up a two-run homer to John Valentin. The Indians took the lead in the bottom of the sixth off of Boston’s Roger Clemens on back-to-back RBI hits from Albert Belle and Eddie Murray that pushed three across.
The Indians lead would only stand until the top of the eighth, when little Luis Alicea sent a 3-2 pitch from reliever Julian Tavarez down the right field line for a game-tying home run.
The ball park, which had a flare for the dramatics all season long, did not disappoint in the first game of the American League Division Series. With one out in the eleventh, Tim Naehring homered to the home run porch in left off of Jim Poole. But leading off the bottom of the inning, Belle tied it with a blast off of Rick Aguilera. Cleveland loaded the bases in the 12th but could not score, but Pena solved that problem on his own with one swing of the bat.