Rivera throws two perfect innings to close out Game 3
Updated: Wednesday October 31, 2001 2:15 AM
NEW YORK (AP) -- After getting overpowered by a pair of aces in Arizona, the New York Yankees finally got a chance to call on their most dominant pitcher.
Mariano Rivera worked two perfect innings -- striking out four straight hitters -- to save Roger Clemens' first victory this postseason as the Yankees beat the Arizona Diamondbacks 2-1 Tuesday night in Game 3 of the World Series.
The Yankees were outscored 13-1 in the first two games of the Series, and the closest thing to a Rivera appearance was when Metallica's "Enter Sandman" was playing on the loudspeakers at Bank One Ballpark during batting practice before Game 2 -- the same song that accompanies Rivera's entrances at Yankee Stadium.
"It was like he didn't even make the trip with us to Arizona," Derek Jeter said. "I don't think he ever even warmed up out there. Any time we get Mariano in the game, we like our chances. Today he came in and did what he always does."
It was only the second time in Rivera's career that he'd gone consecutive postseason games without pitching.
"It feels good just to get the opportunity to pitch," Rivera said. "When I went in there I knew I had a good fastball. I don't care if it's one inning or two innings, as long as we win."
Rivera has converted 23 straight save chances in the postseason, including eight in the World Series.
"He comes exactly as advertised, no secrets," Arizona manager Bob Brenly said. "He's just one of the best in the business."
Keeping it close
Brian Anderson did all he could to bail out the Arizona Diamondbacks and their bumbling defense.
Anderson, a surprise choice to start Game 3 of the World Series after a shaky season that saw him lose his spot in the rotation, held the New York Yankees in check.
Two Arizona errors and a misplayed popup by catcher Damian Miller in the fourth gave the Yankees three extra outs, but Anderson escaped the inning unscathed by retiring Alfonso Soriano with two on after 13 pitches.
"I've never seen a night like that from Damian," Anderson said. "But the ball was going all over the place. Some tough chances out there, but you are rarely going to see that from our ballclub."
Miller cost Anderson again in the sixth when the catcher couldn't corral a wild pitch in time to get Bernie Williams advancing to second. Williams later scored on Scott Brosius' go-ahead single off Mike Morgan.
"I messed it up two, three times," Miller said. "Brian Anderson made pitches and got me out of it."
Anderson was charged with two runs and five hits in 5 1-3 innings. He walked three and struck out one, throwing 107 pitches -- 70 for strikes.
Frustrated, he threw his chewing gum to the floor of the dugout after getting lifted.
"We got exactly what we expected from him," Brenly said. "You have to put runs on the board to win the game and we were not able to support our pitching tonight."
Safe at home
With President Bush throwing out the first pitch, security was airtight at Yankee Stadium.
Everyone entering the ballpark, including Yankees starter Roger Clemens and owner George Steinbrenner, was subject to a search. Most passed through metal detectors and were scanned with a security wand.
There were bomb-sniffing dogs outside the stadium and sharpshooters on the roof. Elevators inside were shut down for most of the game, and evacuation information was posted on the scoreboard during batting practice.
"I'm not going to live my life in fear," Arizona's Mark Grace said. "I feel extremely safe."
Wearing an FDNY sweat shirt, the president strode to the mound, waved to the crowd and threw a strike.
"It certainly shows the American people that the president is a man of his word," said Kevin Hallinan, executive director of security for the commissioner's office. "He's still coming to ballgames. It's a symbol, and I think it's helpful."
Another powerful symbol was flying to the left of the speakers above the scoreboard facade: an American flag recovered from the World Trade Center after the terrorist attacks.
It was found with 12 stars missing and covered in ash. The flag was given to American Legion Post 433 in New Providence, N.J., by an anonymous donor and presented to New York City Port Authority Police.
Justice on the bench
After his team hit just .102 in the first two games of the Series, Joe Torre juggled his lineup a bit against Anderson in Game 3.
With the return to American League rules, Torre tabbed leadoff batter Chuck Knoblauch as his designated hitter. Paul O'Neill got his first start of the Series, batting third and playing right field.
The move paid off defensively when Spencer made a diving catch in left field to save a run during New York's 2-1 victory.
Justice, who has 14 homers and a record 59 RBIs in his postseason career, entered as a pinch-hitter for Spencer in the sixth inning and struck out against reliever Mike Morgan with two runners on. He fanned again in the eighth, making him 0-for-5 with five Ks in the Series.
O'Neill went 2-for-4 with a stolen base.
Brenly chose Erubiel Durazo as his DH in the No. 5 spot. Durazo hit .269 with 12 homers and 38 RBIs during the regular season and delivered a pinch-hit, two-run homer in Game 5 of the NL Championship Series against Atlanta.
Durazo was 2-for-3 with two singles and a walk.