The 1977 Kansas City Royals used 4 doubles to produce 4 runs which broke a 1-1 tie and enabled them to cruise to a 6-1 victory in Game 4 of their ALCS with the 1975 Boston Red Sox. The series is now deadlocked at 2-2 with a pivotal Game 5 on the horizon at Fenway Park.
Kansas City has brutalized Boston pitching with 34 hits in the last two games as they rattled off 19 hits in their Game 3 slugfest loss.
Boston's early 1-0 lead quickly evaporated in the second as John Mayberry continued to wield a sizzling bat, clubbing an opposite field solo shot to draw the Royals even. Mayberry is batting .438 in the ALCS with 3 homers. He also drove in 2 runs to push his RBI total to 10 in the series.
Kansas City's starter Andy Hassler put the Red Sox in lock down mode after surrendering a first inning run going eight strong innings. Hassler allowed 7 hits and struck out 3 to give the Royals their second quality start of the series.It was thought that Boston had the advantage in the starting pitching department coming into this series, but they have only mustered one quality outing in four games. Rick Wise barely met that criteria in Boston's Game 2 win going 6 innings while allowing 3 earned runs. Throughout the series, both starting rotations have been badly ravaged. Kansas City starters have a 2-0 record with a 5.76 ERA while Boston's starting corps stand at 1-2 with a 7.85 ERA.
Hal McRae's RBI double in the third inning to drive in George Brett ended up to be the deciding factor. McRae then came in to count on a dropped pop fly in short left field by Rico Petrocelli. After collecting 3 hits in this one, McRae is now 10-18 in the series scoring 5 times and drilling 2 doubles.
In the following inning, Freddie Patek doubled to drive home Tom Poquette, and George Brett then hit his second double in as many innings to score Patek and chase Boston starter Roger Moret from the game trailing 5-1.
Moret was pummelled for 9 hits in 3.1 innings for 4 earned runs. Used as a spot starter throughout the season, the Red Sox hoped the left-handed Moret could quiet the Royals' left -handed bats of Mayberry, Porter and Brett, but was unable to deliver.
Game 5 will see a repeat of the battle of the aces. Boston now will look for Bill Lee to reverse an ugly postseason as he'll look for revenge against the Royals' Dennis Leonard who bested Lee in Game 1.