Rain postpones Clemens' attempt to win 20th game

Tuesday, September 11, 2001

NEW YORK -- Roger Clemens was ready to pitch and 50,000 fans were ready to watch.

Then the weather got in the way.

Monday night's game between the Boston Red Sox and New York Yankees was canceled because of rain and unplayable field conditions, costing Clemens a chance to earn his 20th victory against his old team.

"The elements won out," Yankees general manager Brian Cashman said.

This game was to be the final meeting of the year between the AL East-leading Yankees and Boston. The teams have no common off-days the rest of the season.

There is a chance the game could affect playoff matchups, which are based on best records.

Cashman said it was the policy of the commissioner's office not to make up games if they only affect home-field advantage.

Clemens (19-1) was scheduled to start for the Yankees. He spent the first 13 years of his career in Boston, then left the Red Sox under testy circumstances after the 1996 season.

"It would've been great theater," Yankees manager Joe Torre said.

Even as the rain fell, Clemens was in the clubhouse, hoping to pitch.

"He was panting in here," Torre said.

Clemens will try to post his sixth 20-win season tonight at home against the Chicago White Sox. Clemens will try to become the oldest 20-game winner in the AL since Early Wynn did it in 1959 just shy of his 40th birthday, according to the Elias Sports Bureau. Clemens turned 39 last month.

WHITE SOX 7, INDIANS 1

CLEVELAND -- Rookie Dan Wright pitched seven strong innings to lead Chicago over Cleveland.

Wright (4-2) allowed one run -- a homer by Jim Thome -- and six hits for the White Sox, who likely won't repeat as AL Central champions but defeated Cleveland 10-9 in the season series.

Jeff Liefer homered off Bartolo Colon (12-11) shortly after replacing injured right fielder Magglio Ordonez, who injured his wrist on a check-swing strikeout. Pinch-hitter Tony Graffanino had a two-run single in the eighth.

Jim Thome hit his AL-leading 47th homer for the Indians, whose division lead slipped to six games over second-place Minnesota.

TWINS 3, TIGERS 2

DETROIT -- Torii Hunter tripled off Luis Pineda (0-1) in the ninth inning and scored the tiebreaking run on Matt LeCroy's sacrifice fly as Minnesota won its third straight win and improved to 11-2 against Detroit this season.

Joe Mays (15-13) got the win by allowing two runs -- one earned -- and four hits in eight innings, and Eddie Guardado finished for his sixth save in eight chances.

-- From wire reports

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