Drayer: Mariners’ 2000 ALCS matchup had a lot of familiar faces from ’95

Apr 16, 2020, 5:12 PM
Mariners Alex Rodriguez, Yankees Derek Jeter...
"Best friends" Alex Rodriguez and Derek Jeter back in 2000. (Getty - Jamie Squire/Allsport)
(Getty - Jamie Squire/Allsport)

With baseball season delayed for the foreseeable future, 710 ESPN Seattle will be broadcasting classic Mariners games throughout the spring. At 7 p.m. tonight we kick off the 2000 American League Championship Series after Seattle’s ALDS sweep of the White Sox. Here’s Shannon Drayer’s preview of the airing of Game 1 between the Mariners and Yankees.

ALCS Game 1: Tuesday, Oct. 10, 2000

Fresh off their sweep of the Chicago White Sox, the Mariners looked to take an advantage of extra rest going into the series opener in the Bronx against the Yankees, who were taken to a Game 5 by the Oakland A’s in their ALDS matchup. The Mariners had three days off, the Yankees just one, which forced them to start July acquisition Denny Neagle, who did not pitch in the division series after giving up 18 runs in his final three starts of the regular season.

The Mariners were able to line up their pitching with Freddy Garcia in the opener, but the man they had hoped would pitch Game 2 suffered a freak injury on one of the off days and was out of the postseason. Jamie Moyer, pitching a simulated game on the previous Saturday, was hit on the knee by a comebacker off the bat of catcher Chris Widger and suffered a hairline fracture in his left kneecap. The Mariners would go with a rotation of Garcia, John Halama, Aaron Sele and Paul Abbott in the best-of-7 series.

While the Yankees came into the series as defending World Series champions, they were just an 87-win team in 2000. The Mariners won more games in the regular season and held the season advantage over New York 6-4, which included winning three out of four in the Bronx in August, but the Yankees had home-field advantage because Seattle was the AL’s wild card. And once they got past Neagle, the Yankees’ rotation was stacked with Orlando Hernandez scheduled for Game 2, Andy Pettitte in Game 3 and Roger Clemens in Game 4.

There was a marquee matchup heralded by national television in this game, but it wasn’t the pitchers. Rather the focus was on the young shortstops, “best friends” (they weren’t) Derek Jeter and Alex Rodriguez. Jeter hit .282/.391/.410 for an .802 OPS against the Mariners. Good numbers, but A-Rod was otherworldly against the Yankees that year, putting up a line of .389/.457/.778 for a .1.234 OPS.



Rickey Henderson, LF
Mike Cameron, CF
Alex Rodriguez, SS
Edgar Martinez, DH
John Olerud, 1B
Jay Buhner, RF
Joe Oliver, C
David Bell, 3B
Mark McLemore, SS

Freddy Garcia, P


Chuck Knoblauch, DH
Derek Jeter, SS
Paul O’Neill, RF
Bernie Williams, CF
David Justice, LF
Tino Martinez, 1B
Jorge Posada, C
Luis Sojo, 2B
Scott Brosius, 3B

Denny Neagle, P

Not-so-fun-fact: Both teams with two players in their lineups that were starters for the 1995 Mariners – Edgar Martinez and Jay Buhner for Seattle, Tino Martinez and Luis Sojo for New York. The Yankees and Mariners each had three players in this game from that ’95 team as Jeff Nelson made an appearance from the pen for the Yankees and Rodriguez was a reserve player for Seattle in ’95.

Follow 710 ESPN Seattle’s Shannon Drayer on Twitter.

Drayer: Mariners’ Carl Edwards path went through the actual bush leagues

Date Starting Pitcher
Saturday, October 1 @ 1:10 pm

Mariners Roof Report

Brought to you by
High 75° | Low 55°
Roof is closed
Athletics at Mariners today at 1:10pm

Shannon Drayer

Mariners Jarred Kelenic...
Shannon Drayer

Drayer: Is Mariners’ Jarred Kelenic finally letting the game come to him?

In four games back with the Mariners, Jarred Kelenic is showing positive adjustments and giving the M's a boost when they need it the most.
4 days ago
Mariners Dylan Moore...
Shannon Drayer

Drayer: What happened on Mariners’ rough road trip, what’s next and injury updates

Mariners insider Shannon Drayer looks at the team's struggles on their recent road trip, looks ahead to their 10-game homestand, and provides injury updates.
5 days ago
Shannon Drayer

Drayer: Mariners again overcome adversity, must continue due to more challenges

The Mariners again overcame adversity on Thursday, winning as losses and injuries piled up. Shannon Drayer details the team going forward.
8 days ago
Mariners Eugenio Suárez...
Shannon Drayer

Drayer: ‘Unreal’ Mariners comeback makes it clear they’re ready for big stage

The Mariners showed what they're made of Sunday, coming back after giving up five runs and the lead in the ninth inning to upset the defending champs.
19 days ago
Mariners Mitch Haniger...
Brent Stecker

Mitch Haniger ‘remarkable’ in Mariners return — will it lead to a deal?

"I think we might be seeing just absolute peak Mitch Haniger right now," Mariners insider Shannon Drayer said Monday on Seattle Sports.
1 month ago
Mariners Julio Rodriguez...
Shannon Drayer

Drayer: Rodríguez’s deal with Mariners will help both sides for long time

The Mariners' deal with Julio Rodríguez does a lot for both sides, keeping Julio a Seattle ambassador and sending a message about the team.
1 month ago
Drayer: Mariners’ 2000 ALCS matchup had a lot of familiar faces from ’95