Red Sox: What if Jeff Bagwell never got traded to Houston Astros?

Houston Astros former players Jeff Bagwell (left) and Roger Clemens (right) throw out a ceremonial first pitch before a game against the Kansas City Royals at Minute Maid Park.
Houston Astros former players Jeff Bagwell (left) and Roger Clemens (right) throw out a ceremonial first pitch before a game against the Kansas City Royals at Minute Maid Park. /
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Sep 18, 2016; Boston, MA, USA; A view of baseballs for batting practice prior to a game between the Boston Red Sox and New York Yankees at Fenway Park. Mandatory Credit: Bob DeChiara-USA TODAY Sports
Sep 18, 2016; Boston, MA, USA; A view of baseballs for batting practice prior to a game between the Boston Red Sox and New York Yankees at Fenway Park. Mandatory Credit: Bob DeChiara-USA TODAY Sports /

Sox trade for Larry Andersen to prepare for playoff run

Before joining the Red Sox in 1990, Andersen went 5-2 with a 1.92 ERA and struck out 68 batters in 73 2/3 innings. He also had allowed just two home runs the whole time. One metric people don’t know is that Andersen blew just one save in his 50 appearances while playing for the Astros. Almost perfect. Andersen was experiencing a fantastic year at age 37.

Upon his arrival to Boston however, he blew 3 of 4 save situations, hardly respectable. Andersen did manage to maintain a 1.23 ERA however while also striking out 25 batters over 22 innings. Hard to be upset with those numbers.

The Sox were hoping that Andersen could maintain those numbers in the playoffs. Perhaps even replicate his 1986 playoff numbers? One had to be optimistic. One would hope that his 1990 playoff performance and future with the Red Sox would be worth it.

Andersen in the playoffs was anything but lock down. He posted an 0-1 record in three innings of work, walked three, struck out three and allowed two runs on three hits with a whopping 6.00 ERA.

In Game 1 of the 1990 American League Championship Series, Andersen got blown out. He allowed two runs on two hits and added a walk in an inning of work.

Game 2 of ALCS Andersen did a little bit better, walking a batter and allowing a hit while recording a strikeout in an inning of work.

Game 3 Andersen didn’t see any work as Mike Boddicker went the whole way. Down 3-0 in the series, the Sox lost the final game where Andersen struck out two and walked one in an inning of work. That was the end of the Sox as they lost four straight and were eliminated from the playoffs.

That was also the end for Larry Andersen in Boston. After being granted free agency, Anderson joined the Padres for two seasons before joining the Phillies for two final seasons before retirement.