May 30, 1938 “The Original Brawl”
What would a rivalry be without some good old fashioned fist-a-cuffs. In 1938, Red Sox player-manager Joe Cronin and New York outfielder Jake Powell fight on the field and beneath the stands before a Yankee Stadium record crowd of 83,533. Both players were fined and suspended for 10 games. This would be the first of many altercations between these two teams.
1941 “Williams vs. DiMaggio”
Boston’s Ted Williams had one of the best seasons ever in which he hit .406, becoming the last player to reach the .400 plateau. Unbelievably, he was outdone by the Yankees’ Joe DiMaggio and his record 56 game hitting streak. DiMaggio overtakes Williams to win the AL MVP, and the Yankees go on to win their 5th World Series in 6 years.
Oct. 1 & 2, 1949 “The Pennant Race”
A classic pennant race comes down to the last weekend of the season. With the Boston Red Sox ahead in the standings by two games, the New York Yankees had to win the last two games in Yankee Stadium to reach the Series. Unfortunately for Red Sox fans, that is exactly what they did. The Yankees win their first of a record five consecutive World Series titles.
May 20, 1976 “Munson vs. Fisk”
In one of baseball’s classic brawls, The Yankees’ Thurman Munson crashed into Boston’s legendary catcher, Carlton Fisk. This ignited a fierce brawl between the two catchers that resulted in them both being kicked out of the game.
Oct 2, 1978 "Bucky Bleeping Dent"
In 1978, the Red Sox and Yankees were forced to play a one game playoff to decide the winner of the AL East. This came after Boston was leading the division by 14 games on July 19. In one of the most heartbreaking moments in Red Sox history, light-hitting Yankees’ shortstop Bucky Dent sent a fly ball sailing over the green monster and cementing a comeback win and the end of Boston’s season. Since that day, Boston fans have never uttered Dent’s name without the now famous middle name.
Oct 11, 2003 “Martinez vs. Zimmer”
In one of the strangest brawls ever, Yankees bench coach and former Sox manager Don Zimmer lunges at Boston’s ace, Pedro Martinez during game 3 of the ALCS. Martinez moves to the side and tosses the 73 year old Zimmer to the ground, which ignites an even bigger brawl. Later in the game, Yankees reliever Jeff Nelson and outfielder Karim Garcia tussle with a Fenway Park groundskeeper after he cheers for the Red Sox in the Yankees’ bullpen.
Oct. 16, 2003 “Aaron Boone?”
The Yankees come back to tie game 7 of the ALCS after Boston manager Grady Little fails to remove a tired Pedro Martinez in the 8th inning. The game goes into extra innings where slumping Yankees’ third baseman Aaron Boone smashes a homer off Boston knuckeballer Tim Wakefield that sends the Yankees to yet another World Series and Boston home for another long off-season. Grady Little is canned days later.
July 24, 2004 “Yet another Brawl”
Newly acquired Yankees’ shortstop Alex Rodriguez and Red Sox catcher Jason Varitek exchange heated words after Rodriguez is plunked by a pitch in this regular season match-up. Varitek pushes A-Rod in the face, which ignites a bench clearing brawl. The inspired Red Sox go on to win the game thanks to Bill Mueller’s ninth inning home run off Yankees closer Mariano Rivera. This is at least the 7th time these two teams have fought in their long history.
Oct. 20, 2004 “Redemption”
In what might possibly go down as the best postseason series in history, the Boston Red Sox fought back from a 3-0 deficit to defeat the New York Yankees 4-3 in the best of seven game ALCS. Coming back from three games down is something that has never been accomplished in the history of major league baseball, and the Red Sox did it against their arch-nemesis. The series had two extra inning games that were both won by the Red Sox in walk off fashion. The Red Sox went on to play the St. Louis Cardinals in their first World Series since 1986.
August 19-23, 2006 "The Sweep"
Heading into Boston with a slim 2 1/2 game lead of the Red Sox, the Yankees staged a record setting series in which one team would claim not only bragging rights, but also a sure fire chance to win the AL East. The Yankees were that team. A record five game sweep against the Sox convinced the world that the Yankees were indeed the better team and adding insult to injury, playing in Boston. Former Red Sox Johnny Damon assisted in the sweep with his home runs and timely hits.