Oct. 16, 2003

The Red Sox rallied for three runs in the seventh and two more in the ninth to stop the Yankees in Game 6 of the American League Championship Series, 9-6.

So it was on to Game 7 at the big ballpark in the Bronx, with Pedro Martinez facing Roger Clemens … but let’s not think about that.

Presumably, the Yankees had this series wrapped up when they won Game 5 at Fenway Park, 4-2, with Game 6 almost universally considered a layup. 

Jason Giambi provided a bit of heft to that assumption with a homer off John Burkett in the first. But the Red Sox kicked the pre-ordained theory where it hurts and took a 4-1 lead in the third.

By the end of six New York had a 6-4 lead. Warm up the plane at Laguardia, they Red Sox were headed home.

Then the Yankees flipped the script. In the seventh, Nomar Garciaparra tripled and scored on a wild throw. Manny Ramirez doubled, went to third on a wild pitch and scored on David Ortiz’s RBI single. With two outs and the bases loaded, Felix Heredia walked Johnny Damon to force in the eventual game-winner.

Boston tacked on two insurance runs in the ninth and strolled into Game 7 with wind in their sails.

One night later, Grady Little …