“A little floater…Diamondbacks win it! They’re the World Champions. Gonzalez did it!”
2011 marks the 10th anniversary of the Arizona Diamondbacks World Series Championship over the New York Yankees. The remarkable Game 7 ended with Luis Gonzalez fighting off a nasty Mariano Rivera cutter that dropped safely beyond a drawn-in infield barely reaching the outfield grass. It was a stunning conclusion to one of the greatest World Series ever played.
Randy Johnson and Curt Schilling shared the World Series MVP honors after neutralizing the potent New York attack. The “Big Unit” rose to legendary status upon entering the eighth-inning of Game 7 after starting the night before. It is still baffling to this day why the Manager, Bob Brenly, left Johnson in Game 6 with a 15-0 lead after five innings? The strategy worked out but it could have cost them the title.
The Diamondbacks closer, Byung-Hyun Kim, defied the odds by allowing a game-tying two-run home run, with two-outs, in the bottom of the ninth-inning of Games 4 and 5. It was one of the more improbably feats in World Series history. Fortunately, Arizona was able to prevail but Kim was nowhere to be found in the rest of the series.
If not for the heroics of Johnson, Schilling, and Gonzalez then outfielder Danny Bautista would have gained more press for his tremendous exploits in the series. Bautista hit .583 (7-12) with two doubles and seven RBIs. It is one of the more overlooked performances in recent memory.
The championship in the desert capped off many great careers for the veteran ball club. A talented roster filled with players such as Mark Grace, Matt Williams, Steve Finley, Jay Bell, Reggie Sanders, Tony Womack, Mike Morgan, Bobby Witt, Greg Swindell, and the remaining cast who never raised a World Series trophy.
Undoubtedly, it was one of the greatest World Series ever played.
About the Author
Written by Josh Robbins
Josh is a freelance video-journalist and baseball historian in Chandler, Arizona. In 2010, he earned a Master’s Degree in Sport Management from CSU-Long Beach. From June 16 to July 11, 2008, he watched a game in all Thirty Major League Baseball stadiums in a world record 26 days by car. You can email him at firstname.lastname@example.org or visit his website at Thirty27.com.