Red Sox: 10 best MLB postseason performances in franchise history
10. Jim Lonborg – ’67 World Series
Behind a Cy Young award winning campaign from their ace Jim Lonberg, the “Impossible Dream” Red Sox of 1967 shocked the world of baseball when they won the American League pennant in the final days of the season and subsequently took legendary pitcher Bob Gibson and the St. Louis Cardinals down to the wire in a thrilling 7-game World Series.
Much is remembered of the ’67 Sox as the group that ultimately revived the franchise and New England’s love for the game of baseball, however it’s important to remember Lonborg’s contribution as the 25-year old led the team’s pitching staff with a 22-9 record, 3.16 ERA, and 246 Ks in 273.0 IP.
An ace in the truest sense, Lonberg took the hill for the Sox in games 2, 5, and 7 of the ’67 Fall Classic. Coming into Game 7 of the series, Lonberg had gone 2-0 over 18 IP while surrendering just one run. After trading wins between himself and Gibson throughout the series, the two men finally faced off in the final, winner-take-all game.
Even though the Sox ultimately came up short in Game 7, with Lonberg suffering his worst outing of October, he still finished the Fall Classic with a 2-1 record, 2.63 ERA, and 11 Ks in 24 IP.
A forgotten postseason performance in Red Sox history because he failed to finish the job, Lonberg’s outings in the ’67 series were vital to the team pushing the Cardinals to the limit. In both Games 2 and 5 – with 5 seeing the Red Sox in a 3-1 hole in the series – Lonberg tossed back-to-back complete games to keep Boston’s hopes of a world title alive.