1997 World Series Game 7

100811-craig-counsell-1997-e1414607589103The 1997 World Series between the Cleveland Indians and the Florida Marlins was a unique one. The Indians made it to their 2nd World Series in 3 years having lost in 1995 against the Atlanta Braves and were finally looking to win their first World Series since 1948. The Marlins, a franchise in their 5th year in existence had come out of nowhere to already play in their first World Series. The series would start with the Marlins winning the first game then the Indians would respond in the second game and the series would go back and forth in that order. Game 7 in Miami would decide who wins the World Series at Pro Player Stadium. The Cleveland Indians struck first in the 3rd inning and went up 2-0 when Indians Tony Fernandez singled with two outs, scoring Jim Thome and Marquis Grissom. Marlins finally arrived late to the party in the 7th and cut the lead to 2-1 after Bobby Bonilla hit a solo home run. In the 9th with just three outs away from their first World Series title since 1948 the Indians sent their closer Jose Mesa. The Marlins stayed alive with Craig Counsell sac fly that send in the tying run and the game was tied 2-2. Going into extra innings both teams knew what was at stake. In the bottom of the 11th the Marlins loaded the bases with two outs, Edgar Renteria had a chance to be the hero. Renteria hit an 0-1 slider that lined into center between the Indians infielders as Craig Counsell came in to score the World Series winning run. Renteria removed his helmet with tears in his eyes before touching first base as he just hit a World Series winning walkoff single. This was first time that a home team that won a deciding World Series game celebrated on the field instead of in their locker room like the traditional way. Since then the home team that wins the deciding World Series game celebrates on the field. The Marlins became the first wild card team to win the World Series.

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