BOSTON (CBS) — Former Red Sox manager John McNamara, who was skipper of the 1986 Red Sox team that lost to the New York Mets in the World Series, has died. McNamara ,who passed away on Tuesday, was 88.
Family confirmed McNamara’s passing to The Boston Globe’s Dan Shaughnessy on Wednesday.
McNamara was hired by Boston in 1985 and led the team to an 81-81 record in his first season on the bench. Boston won 95 games during the 1986 regular season and won the AL pennant after overcoming a 3-1 deficit to the Angels, winning the ALCS in seven games. McNamara won AL Manager of the Year honors that season.
But he’ll forever be remembered for what happened in the World Series, when he had a hobbled Bill Buckner at first base in the extra innings of Game 6. Buckner famously misplayed a grounder by Mookie Wilson, letting the ball go between his legs and allowing the game-winning run to score.
Boston would go on to blow a three-run lead in Game 7, and ended up losing the series to the Mets. That was the only time a McNamara-led team made it to the World Series, and the last time the manager would take a team to the playoffs.
The Red Sox went 78-84 in 1987, and McNamara was fired at the All-Star break in 1988 after a 43-42 start to the season.
McNamara managed parts of 19 seasons over his career, which spanned from 1969 to 1996. He had a career record of 1,160-1,233-2 in stints with the Oakland A’s, San Diego Padres, Cincinnati Reds, California Angels, Cleveland Indians and the Red Sox.