This Week in Baseball History: Twin Triples

July 17, 1990

With no score in the fourth inning of a game between the Red Sox and the Twins at Fenway Park, Wade Boggs managed to make his way to third base as a result of a walk and a Jody Reed double. Another walk by Twins pitcher Scott Erickson loaded the bases with Tom Brunansky stepping to the plate.

Twins third baseman Gary Gaetti leaned over to Boggs and told him to “get ready for a triple play”. It was unlikely, but Gaetti knew that his former teammate Brunansky was a pull hitter with little speed. Boggs rolled his eyes at Gaetti’s prediction. The triple play, after all, is one of those rare plays in baseball- like landing on the moon, according to Jody Reed.

Brunansky hit a sharp ground ball right to Gaetti, who put his money where his mouth was and started the 5-6-3 triple play.

Jody Reed had another opportunity to walk on the moon in the eighth inning of the same game. He came up to bat with the bases loaded and nobody out. Baseball history had no recorded instances in which two triple plays were turned in the same game. Gaetti kept his mouth shut and third.

Instead, he took Reed’s sharp grounder, stepped on third, and threw to Newman to start the game’s second 5-6-3 triple play, Gaetti to Newman to Hrbek.

The two triple plays were not enough, however. The Red Sox won the game 1-0.

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5 Responses to This Week in Baseball History: Twin Triples

  1. Jeff A says:

    I was listening to the radio and keeping score of that game. I’ll never forget it.

  2. Scot says:

    For whatever reason, my fuzzy memory of this game had me convinced that Brunansky hit into both triple plays. I didn’t see (or listen to) the game live, and the image I always see in highlight reels is Bruno getting thrown at at first by two or three steps.

    In any event, the old newspaper accounts “reminded” me that he only hit into one of them. It’s too bad, would have been an even better story my way.

  3. SBG says:

    What an exhilirating and frustrating game. I remember it well.

  4. […] in Twins’ lore. That, of course, was the game in which the Twins set a major league record by turning two triple plays in the same […]

  5. Arne says:

    I wrote about this a couple months ago, not knowing Scot had already done so (http://miscbaseball.wordpress.com/2009/05/21/two-triple-plays-in-one-game/), and found a nice line from Gaetti about predicting the first triple play to Boggs:
    “He just looked at me and spit. I think he rolled his eyes, too.”

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