|1986 World Series|
|MVP||Ray Knight (New York)|
|Umpires||John Kibler (NL), Jim Evans (AL), Harry Wendelstedt (NL), Joe Brinkman (AL), Ed Montague (NL), Dale Ford (AL)|
|Hall of Famers||Mets: Gary Carter|
Red Sox: Wade Boggs, Jim Rice, Tom Seaver
|ALCS||Boston Red Sox defeated California Angels, 4-3|
|NLCS||New York Mets defeated Houston Astros, 4-2|
|TV announcers||Vin Scully and Joe Garagiola|
|Radio announcers||Jack Buck and Sparky Anderson|
|World Series Program|
The 1986 World Series was the championship series of Major League Baseball's (MLB) 1986 season. The 83rd edition of the World Series, it was a best-of-seven playoff played between the National League (NL) champion New York Mets and the American League (AL) champion Boston Red Sox. The Mets won the Series in the seventh game, after overcoming a deficit of two runs with two outs and no one on base in the bottom of the 10th inning of Game 6. This was a game in which the Red Sox were twice one strike away from victory, and known for the famous error by Boston's first baseman Bill Buckner after their lead had already been blown. Game 6 has been cited in the legend of the "Curse of the Bambino" to explain the major comeback. The 1986 World Series marked the second time in which that team lost the first two games of the series at home (it had happened in the previous year's World Series). It was also the first World Series to use the designated hitter only in games played at the American League representative's stadium, a policy which has continued since (prior to this, since 1976, the DH would be used in all parks in the World Series for even-numbered years, but in odd-numbered years, the DH rule would not be in effect).
The New York Mets finished the regular season with a franchise-best record of 108-54, winning the National League East division by games over the division rival Philadelphia Phillies. They then won a tightly contested 1986 National League Championship Series against the Houston Astros, 4 games to 2, clinching the series with a 7-6, 16-inning win in Game 6. On July 19, Mets' infielder Tim Teufel and pitchers Rick Aguilera, Bobby Ojeda, and Ron Darling were arrested after fighting with policemen outside a bar in Houston. Just three days later, the Mets played a game in Cincinnati that saw Ray Knight, Darryl Strawberry, and Kevin Mitchell get ejected, forcing starting catcher Gary Carter to play third base and the Mets to play a pitcher in the outfield, with lefty Jesse Orosco and right-hander Roger McDowell alternating between the pitcher's mound and the outfield as needed. Despite the adversity, the Mets won the game, 6-3 in 14 innings, on a three-run homer by Howard Johnson.
Boston went 95-66 during the season, winning the American League East division by games over their biggest nemesis, the New York Yankees. The gritty play of eventual ALCS MVP Marty Barrett and Rich Gedman; clutch hitting from veterans Jim Rice, Wade Boggs, Don Baylor, Dwight Evans and Dave Henderson; and quality starting pitching, especially from 1986 American League MVP and Cy Young Award winner Roger Clemens, Bruce Hurst and Oil Can Boyd, pushed the Red Sox to the World Series. The team's defining moment occurred in Game 5 of the 1986 American League Championship Series against the California Angels. With the Angels leading three games to one in the best-of-seven series and their top reliever Donnie Moore on the mound, the Sox needed a last-out miracle home run from Henderson to survive Game 5; they later loaded the bases and got the go-ahead run on a sacrifice fly from Henderson off Moore in the eleventh. The Angels never recovered from this blow, and with Boston capitalizing on some defensive miscues by the Angels, and clutch performances by some of their big name players (namely Rice and Clemens in the deciding game), the Red Sox clinched the pennant with a seven-game series win.
|1||October 18||Boston Red Sox - 1, New York Mets - 0||Shea Stadium||2:59||55,076|
|2||October 19||Boston Red Sox - 9, New York Mets - 3||Shea Stadium||3:36||55,063|
|3||October 21||New York Mets - 7, Boston Red Sox - 1||Fenway Park||2:58||33,595|
|4||October 22||New York Mets - 6, Boston Red Sox - 2||Fenway Park||3:22||33,920|
|5||October 23||New York Mets - 2, Boston Red Sox - 4||Fenway Park||3:09||34,010|
|6||October 25||Boston Red Sox - 5, New York Mets - 6 (10 innings)||Shea Stadium||4:02||55,078|
|7||October 27+||Boston Red Sox - 5, New York Mets - 8||Shea Stadium||3:11||55,032|
+: postponed from October 26 due to rain
|WP: Bruce Hurst (1-0) LP: Ron Darling (0-1) Sv: Calvin Schiraldi (1)|
In the opener, Boston's Bruce Hurst dazzled the New Yorkers with his looping curve and forkball, allowing only four hits over eight innings, and getting Ray Knight to ground into an inning-ending double play to escape trouble in the bottom of the sixth inning. New York's Ron Darling was equally effective, yielding only an unearned run in the seventh inning when Mets second baseman Tim Teufel committed an error eerily similar to the one committed by Félix Millán in Game 1 of the 1973 World Series that allowed two unearned runs to score in Oakland's 2-1 victory over the Mets. Red Sox closer Calvin Schiraldi walked Darryl Strawberry to lead off the bottom of the ninth inning, giving Mets fans visions of a rally. However, Schiraldi got Ray Knight to force Strawberry at second base, and got Wally Backman to fly out to left field. With two outs, Danny Heep was called upon to bat for weak-hitting shortstop Rafael Santana. Schiraldi worked him to a 2-2 count, and got Heep to swing at the last pitch for a strikeout and a save.
Just as they did in the League Championship Series against Houston, the Mets opened the series with a 1-0 defeat. (Mets legend Tom Seaver, as a member of the Red Sox, got a large standing ovation from the Shea Stadium fans during the Game 1 introductions. Seaver did not pitch in the series because of a knee injury.)
|WP: Steve Crawford (1-0) LP: Dwight Gooden (0-1) Sv: Bob Stanley (1)|
BOS: Dave Henderson (1), Dwight Evans (1)
After dropping the first game, the Mets turned to young phenom Dwight Gooden in what figured to be a classic matchup with Boston's own young pitching sensation Roger Clemens. That duel did not materialize, as neither pitcher went beyond five innings. The Red Sox drew first blood in the top of the third inning, when after a leadoff walk to Spike Owen, Keith Hernandez fielded a Clemens bunt, but threw it away trying to catch Owen at second base. This was costly, as Wade Boggs drove in Owen with a double, Marty Barrett drove in Clemens with a single, and Bill Buckner drove in Boggs with a single to give the Sox a 3-0 lead.
The Mets struck back in the bottom half of the inning, putting runners on second and third base for Wally Backman. Backman grounded one up the middle, plating Rafael Santana, and Hernandez grounded out, allowing Gooden to score and bring the Mets within one run. However, Dave Henderson, the hero of the ALCS, drove the second pitch from Gooden in the top of the fourth inning to left-center field for a home run. Dwight Evans followed with a two-run home run in the top of the fifth inning, bringing the score to 6-2.
Although Clemens had a comfortable lead going into the bottom of the fifth inning, he was pulled in favor of Steve Crawford after facing three batters, leaving runners on the corners. Crawford promptly gave up a single to Gary Carter that sent Backman home, cutting the lead to three runs. Crawford struck out Darryl Strawberry and got Danny Heep to ground out to quash any threat, but this left Clemens ineligible to receive a decision in the game.
Gooden was gone after five innings, being relieved by Rick Aguilera in the sixth inning. Aguilera loaded the bases in the seventh inning, and after consecutive RBI singles by Henderson and Owen, was pulled in favor of Jesse Orosco, who shut down the Red Sox over the next two innings.
The Red Sox were not done, however. Facing Sid Fernandez, pitching in relief with runners on first and second base in the ninth inning, Boggs drove in Henderson with a double to make the score 9-3. The Mets were unable to recover from this deficit, and took the loss, giving Boston a 2-0 advantage heading to Fenway Park.
|WP: Bob Ojeda (1-0) LP: Oil Can Boyd (0-1)|
NYM: Lenny Dykstra (1)
The Mets bounced back from their early-series sluggishness in the top of the first inning, when Lenny Dykstra led off with a home run to give the Mets an early lead. After two singles, Gary Carter followed with an RBI double, and Danny Heep drove in two runners with a single to give the Mets a 4-0 lead in the first inning. After the rocky start, Red Sox starter Oil Can Boyd settled down, but Bob Ojeda pitched well and Boston was unable to overcome their early deficit. In his first at bat in the World Series, Don Baylor almost homered in the second inning but it turned out to be a double off the Green Monster.
Ojeda gave up an RBI single to Marty Barrett in the bottom of the third inning, but this would prove to be the only Boston run of the game. Carter drove in two runners with a bases-loaded single in the seventh inning, and Ray Knight drove in Darryl Strawberry, who singled and moved to third on two wild pitches, with a double in the eighth inning off of Joe Sambito. Roger McDowell pitched the final two frames to seal a 7-1 Mets victory.
|WP: Ron Darling (1-1) LP: Al Nipper (0-1) Sv: Jesse Orosco (1)|
NYM: Gary Carter 2 (2), Lenny Dykstra (2)
Ron Darling faced off against Al Nipper, as the Mets looked to tie the Series. Neither starter allowed a run until the top of the fourth inning, when Gary Carter ripped a two-run home run over the Green Monster and Ray Knight drove in Darryl Strawberry, who doubled after the home run, with a single. Lenny Dykstra came through with a two-run home run of his own in the top of the seventh inning, and Carter hit a shot in the top of the eighth inning, both off of Steve Crawford.
The Red Sox did not go quietly, scoring two runs on a Dwight Evans single after a double and a Dave Henderson sacrifice fly after a single in the eighth inning off of Roger McDowell, but it was not enough, and the Mets evened the series at two games apiece.
|WP: Bruce Hurst (2-0) LP: Dwight Gooden (0-2)|
NYM: Tim Teufel (1)
The Red Sox struck first in the second when Dave Henderson doubled with one out off of Dwight Gooden and scored on Spike Owen's sacrifice fly. Dwight Evans's RBI single next inning with two on made it 2-0 Red Sox. In the fifth, Jim Rice hit a leadoff triple and scored on Don Baylor's single. After Evans singled, Sid Fernandez relieved Gooden and allowed an RBI double to Henderson. Bruce Hurst pitched 7 1/3 shutout innings before Tim Teufel's home run in the eighth put the Mets on the board. In the ninth, Mookie Wilson doubled with two outs and scored on Rafael Santana's single before Hurst struck out Lenny Dykstra to end the game as the Red Sox's 4-2 gave them a 3-2 series lead heading back to New York.
|WP: Rick Aguilera (1-0) LP: Calvin Schiraldi (0-1)|
BOS: Dave Henderson (2)
In Game 6, Boston took a quick 2-0 lead on RBI base hits from Dwight Evans and Marty Barrett. The Mets tied the score in the fifth inning on a single from Ray Knight and a run-scoring double play by Danny Heep (his last at-bat ever as a Met). An error by Knight led to Barrett scoring in the seventh to give Boston a 3-2 lead.
In the top of the eighth, the Red Sox had Dave Henderson on second with one out. Manager John McNamara sent rookie Mike Greenwell to pinch hit for Roger Clemens in an effort to match Greenwell, a left-handed batter, against the Mets' dominant short-relief man Roger McDowell even as righty slugger Don Baylor sat on the bench; Greenwell struck out and the Sox scored no runs that inning. It was initially said that Clemens was removed from the game due to a blister forming on one of his fingers, but both he and McNamara dispute this. Clemens said to Bob Costas on an MLB Network program concerning the 1986 postseason that McNamara decided to pull him despite Clemens wanting to pitch. McNamara said to Costas that Clemens "begged out" of the game. At the time of the move, McNamara had closer Calvin Schiraldi throwing in the bullpen.
McNamara called upon his closer Schiraldi in the bottom of the eighth inning for a potential two-inning save. Lee Mazzilli, pinch hitting for Jesse Orosco, who recorded the final out of the eighth, led off the inning with a single. Lenny Dykstra then reached on an attempted sacrifice to put two runners on. Wally Backman followed with another bunt to move Mazzilli and Dykstra into scoring position, and Schiraldi intentionally walked Keith Hernandez to load the bases for Gary Carter. Schiraldi ran up a 3-0 count on Carter, but Carter swung at the next pitch and flied to left, deep enough to score Mazzilli and tie the game. With Dykstra now on third, Darryl Strawberry stood in with a chance to drive in the go-ahead run. Instead, Strawberry flied out to end the inning.
Both teams failed to score in the ninth. In the top of the tenth inning, the Red Sox were to send Henderson and Spike Owen to lead off the inning with the pitcher's spot due third. Henderson hit reliever Rick Aguilera's second pitch of the inning out of the park for a 4-3 Boston edge. Aguilera struck Owen out, and McNamara elected to send Schiraldi to bat where he too struck out. Aguilera then gave up a double to Wade Boggs and a single to Barrett, which scored another run and gave Boston a 5-3 lead.
Schiraldi returned to the mound for his third inning of work to face the Mets' 2-3-4 hitters in the 10th. He retired Backman on a fly to left and Keith Hernandez on a fly to center, and the Red Sox were one out away from their first championship in 68 years. After his out, Hernandez went into the clubhouse and undressed and watched the remainder of the game on a clubhouse TV. Because of a mistake by the scoreboard operator, the words "Congratulations Boston Red Sox, 1986 World Champions" briefly flashed on the scoreboard.
Carter was the next batter, with the pitcher's spot due next if he was able to reach base. The veteran catcher came through with a single to keep the inning alive, but the Mets needed a pinch hitter for Aguilera and there was nobody in the dugout. Mets manager Davey Johnson had to send someone to find his intended pinch hitter, rookie utility man Kevin Mitchell. Mitchell had gone into the clubhouse after Hernandez recorded the second out, allegedly to book a flight home for later that night, and had to put his uniform back on in order to bat. Despite the rush, the rookie utility man came through with a single of his own, advancing Carter to second and putting the tying runs on base.
This brought Knight to the plate with a chance to drive in his second run of the night. After being brought to his final strike with the first two pitches from Schiraldi, Knight singled on the next pitch, scoring Carter from second with the first run the Mets needed and advancing Mitchell to third with the tying run.
With Mookie Wilson batting and the winning run now on base, McNamara brought in Bob Stanley, who had yet to allow an earned run in the series. With the count at 2-2 after six pitches, Stanley threw a breaking ball that swerved inside and skipped in front of Wilson, who fell in the batter's box trying to avoid the ball. From his knees, Wilson signaled to Mitchell to break for home and the rookie scored the tying run without a throw. Knight moved into scoring position on the pitch. Stanley missed a chance to end the game without allowing Mitchell to score. Knight had taken a very large lead and caught the eye of second baseman Marty Barrett, who called several times to his pitcher to make a pickoff throw. Stanley never heard Barrett as he focused squarely on Wilson, and the noise made by the sellout crowd at Shea Stadium made it nearly impossible to hear anything.
On the 10th pitch of the at-bat, Stanley finally got Wilson to put the ball in play, forcing a ground ball to first base. Veteran first baseman Bill Buckner, who was playing on the lip of the infield to protect against a hit through the first-second base hole, moved over to the foul line to try to field the ball, but it rolled between his legs and into right field. Knight rounded third and scored without a play, and the Mets tied the series at three with their 6-5 victory.
In the 2011 ESPN Films documentary Catching Hell, Buckner explained how, years after the event, he realized from watching a television replay how he had missed the ball. He said, when he played in the field, he liked to wear a very loose glove -- i.e., one that was floppy. When he moved to his left to try to field Wilson's grounder and then stopped, the momentum of the leftward-moving loose glove caused the glove to close. The ball then went just past the right side of the glove. After the top of the tenth, NBC began setting up in the visiting clubhouse for what they believed was the inevitable postgame victory celebration. The Commissioner's Trophy had been brought into the Red Sox clubhouse along with several bottles of champagne, and Bob Costas was to preside over the presentation. However, after Stanley's wild pitch in the bottom of the tenth, everything was quickly struck and removed from the room before the Red Sox returned. Costas later recalled the removal of all the equipment for the postgame celebration as being "like a scene change in a Broadway musical. In, out, gone, not a trace."
|WP: Roger McDowell (1-0) LP: Calvin Schiraldi (0-2) Sv: Jesse Orosco (2)|
BOS: Dwight Evans (2), Rich Gedman (1)
NYM: Ray Knight (1), Darryl Strawberry (1)
The seventh and deciding game of the series was scheduled for Sunday night, October 26. However, a drenching rainstorm left the field at Shea Stadium unplayable and the game was postponed to the following night.
The scheduled pitching matchup was to pit Ron Darling for the Mets against Oil Can Boyd for the Red Sox. Darling had already made two starts, losing Game 1 and winning Game 4. Boyd had started Game 3 and lost after struggling early, giving up four first inning runs.
The postponement, however, gave Red Sox manager John McNamara another option. Unlike the Mets, who had been using a three-man rotation, the Red Sox had used four starters. Since the rainout extended the series by a day, Game 1 and 5 starter Bruce Hurst received an extra day of rest and would be available to start with three days having passed. Since Hurst had done so well to that point — after all, he was set to be named World Series MVP before the Mets rallied to win Game 6 — McNamara chose him over Boyd to start Game 7.
After Boyd received word he was not starting the final game of the series, he went down into the visitors' clubhouse and remained in there alone for some time. McNamara dispatched pitching coach Bill Fischer to find Boyd, and when he located him Fischer discovered that Boyd had consumed a great deal of alcohol and was in no condition to function much less play. Fischer moved Boyd into the manager's office where he locked the door and left him for the entire game.
Boston got to Darling early, recording three runs in the second inning. Dwight Evans and Rich Gedman hit back to back home runs to lead the inning off and with two out, Wade Boggs drove in Dave Henderson with a single for a 3-0 Red Sox lead. Darling did not pitch as well as he had earlier in the series and was pulled in the fourth inning with two outs and a runner in scoring position. Sid Fernandez came in and after walking Boggs, he was able to retire Marty Barrett on a fly ball to right field. Fernandez then retired the side in order in the fifth and sixth.
Still trailing 3-0 and having only one hit to show for their outing so far, the New York bats came alive in the bottom of the sixth against Hurst. After recording the first out, pinch hitter Lee Mazzilli and Mookie Wilson recorded back to back hits and Tim Teufel drew a walk to load the bases. Keith Hernandez singled to drive in Mazzilli and Wilson, and Gary Carter followed with a liner to right that Evans dove to try to catch but could not come up with. Pinch runner Wally Backman, who came in to run for Teufel, scored the tying run but Hernandez, who had to wait to see if the ball was going to be caught by Evans, got a late jump and was thrown out as Evans was able to relay the throw to Spike Owen. Hernandez got into an argument with right field umpire Dale Ford, claiming that his delay in ruling on Evans' play caused him to wait too long before advancing. With two outs, Hurst faced Darryl Strawberry and retired him.
Roger McDowell came in to replace Fernandez in the seventh. His first batter was Tony Armas, who pinch hit for Hurst and thus ended his night. After striking him out, McDowell induced Boggs and Barrett to ground out to end the inning. The Red Sox now needed to make a pitching change, and with Boyd in no condition to pitch the bullpen was short-staffed and McNamara called on Calvin Schiraldi, his closer who had lost the previous game after pitching 2.2 innings, to face Ray Knight, Kevin Mitchell, and Rafael Santana with the pitcher's spot due up fourth. Knight greeted Schiraldi with a solo home run to give the Mets their first lead of the game. Lenny Dykstra came in to bat for Mitchell and followed with a single and advanced to second on a wild pitch. Santana then singled to score Dykstra, and after McDowell bunted Santana to second McNamara called on Joe Sambito to face Wilson. After giving Wilson a free pass, Sambito then walked Backman to load the bases for Hernandez. The Mets' captain hit a fly ball to center field that was deep enough to score Santana and advance Wilson to third. Bob Stanley, who allowed the game-winning play in Game 6, was then brought in to face Carter and got him to ground out, but the Mets were now ahead 6-3.
Having only one base runner since the third inning, the Red Sox mounted a rally in the top of the eighth. Bill Buckner led off with a single. Jim Rice followed with one, and Evans hit a double after that to drive Buckner and Rice in and cut the lead to one. Davey Johnson brought in Jesse Orosco to try and stop the rally with the tying run now in scoring position. Orosco retired Gedman on a lineout, struck Henderson out, and induced a groundout to pinch hitter Don Baylor to strand Evans in scoring position. McNamara brought in Al Nipper, who started and lost Game 4, to pitch the bottom half. Darryl Strawberry led off with a home run to make the score 7-5. Knight singled and advanced to second on a groundout by Dykstra. Santana was intentionally walked to get to the pitcher's spot, and Orosco helped his cause by initially squaring to bunt, then swinging and singling to center to drive in Knight. Steve Crawford then came in to face Wilson and hit him, loading the bases. Backman then grounded into a force retiring Santana, and Hernandez grounded out and ended the inning.
With a three run lead, Orosco took the hill for the ninth facing the top of the Red Sox order. Ed Romero, who replaced Spike Owen at shortstop, was retired on a foul pop. Boggs then grounded out to Backman at second, leaving Marty Barrett as the last hope for the Red Sox. Orosco worked a 2-2 count before getting Barrett to swing and miss to end the game and the series, with the Mets taking the deciding game 8-5. The win went to McDowell, with Schiraldi taking his second consecutive loss. Orosco recorded his second save.
|New York Mets||4||0||2||3||3||3||7||6||1||3||32||65||5|
|Boston Red Sox||1||5||5||1||4||0||4||4||1||2||27||69||4|
|Total attendance: 321,774 Average attendance: 45,967|
Game 6 did not end until 12:32 a.m. Eastern, causing the first and only cancellation of an episode of NBC's Saturday Night Live in the show's history. The episode, featuring Rosanna Arquette and scheduled to air live at 11:30 p.m. Eastern, was instead recorded for the studio audience beginning at 1:30 a.m., and aired November 8 with a comedic apology from Ron Darling. (NBC generally no longer schedules first-run SNL episodes on the same night as sports coverage.)
NBC's broadcast of Game 7 (which went up against a Monday Night Football game between the Washington Redskins and New York Giants on ABC) garnered a Nielsen rating of 38.9 and a 55 share, making it the highest-rated single World Series game to date.
The Can is leaking in the first inning.
So the winning run is at second base, with two outs, three and two to Mookie Wilson. [A] little roller up along first... behind the bag! It gets through Buckner! Here comes Knight, and the Mets win it!
Scully then remained silent for more than three minutes, letting the pictures and the crowd noise tell the story. Scully resumed with:
If one picture is worth a thousand words, you have seen about a million words, but more than that, you have seen an absolutely bizarre finish to Game 6 of the 1986 World Series. The Mets are not only alive, they are well, and they will play the Red Sox in Game 7 tomorrow!
Three and two the count. And the pitch by Stanley. And a groundball trickling, it is a fair ball--gets by Buckner! Rounding third Knight! The Mets will win the ballgame! The Mets win! They win!
Here's the pitch to Mookie Wilson. Winning run at second. Ground ball to first, it is a run...an error! An error by Buckner! The winning run scores! The Mets win it 6 to 5 with three in the 10th! The ball went right through the legs of Buckner and the Mets with 2 men out and nobody on have scored three times to bring about a seventh game, which will be played here tomorrow night. Folks, it was unbelievable. An error, right through the legs of Buckner. There were 2 out, nobody on, a single by Carter, a single by Mitchell, a single by Ray Knight, a wild pitch, an error by Buckner. 3 in the 9th for the Mets. They've won the game 6-5 and we shall play here ... tomorrow night! Well, open up the history book, folks, we've got an entry for you.
Groundball to first base, Buckner, it gets by him! And here comes the winning run!!
The collapse of the Boston Red Sox in Game 6 and Game 7 prompted a series of articles by George Vecsey of The New York Times, in which he mentions a "Babe Ruth Curse." Although it had long been noted that the selling of Babe Ruth to the New York Yankees had marked the beginning of a down period in the Red Sox's fortunes, this was one of the first instances, if not the first, in which mention of a "curse" was made. The term "Curse of the Bambino" was not in common use by the press during the 1920s, nor can it be found through the 1970s, as a search of historical newspapers will illustrate. In fact, even though Vecsey's articles mention a "Babe Ruth Curse", the New York Times did not use the phrase "Curse of the Bambino" until 1990, the year that Dan Shaughnessy's book of the same name and a Boston Globe article about it were published. Shaughnessy's book The Curse of the Bambino helped that phrase become a key part of the Red Sox lore in the media thereafter.
The Series, and especially Game 6, were referenced in the Seinfeld episode "The Boyfriend", which also guest starred former Mets player Keith Hernandez. Hernandez being referred to Game 6 in the episode suggested that he was part of the winning rally, even though he was the 2nd (and final) out of the inning.
In a 1999 episode of The King of Queens, Doug Heffernan promises Richie Ianucci that they will watch the Series that is being rerun on TV, only to abandon him for Ray Barone, who invites him to play golf (with Arthur Spooner tagging along) until a rainstorm ends their plans. In another episode from the same year, Doug and his cousin Danny bring up the Series while revisiting their high school years.
In the Curb Your Enthusiasm episode "Mister Softee", Bill Buckner appears as a guest star and mocks his famous 1986 mishap by missing a crucial catch of a Mookie Wilson-signed baseball. As the episode concludes, he redeems himself by catching a baby thrown from a burning building.
In 2001, playwright David Kruh had his play Curse of the Bambino premiere at the Boston Lyric Stage. After the 2004 World Series it was rewritten with a happier ending.
In the 2005 film Bewitched starring Will Ferrell and Nicole Kidman, there's scene in which Jack (Ferrell) asks Isabel (Kidman) if here parents were in the witch business, Isabel answered that both her parents are and that her mother fixed the 1986 World Series.
The Curse of the Bambino, said to have started after Red Sox owner Harry Frazee sold Babe Ruth to the Yankees after the 1919 season...soared in popularity after the Sox came within one strike of winning the 1986 Series, only to collapse after a score-tying wild pitch.
Starting in 1976, baseball allowed the American League to use its designated hitter in even-numbered years. -- But this year, after taking polls that showed a modest majority of fans dislikes the rule, baseball decided to use the designated hitter in American League parks during the Series.