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Born: June 19, 1974; Toledo, Ohio Height: 6'2" Weight: 200
Mientkiewicz came to the Red Sox at the July 31 trade deadline in a four-team deal. The Sox sent Nomar Garciaparra and a minor leaguer to the Cubs, who dealt prospects to both the Twins and Expos. In return, Boston received Mientkiewicz from Minnesota and Orlando Cabrera from Montreal.
Since the team was in Minnesota when the trade happened, Doug was able to join his new team that night. He went 2-for-4 that night, and had two hits in each of his next two starts, too.
Doug's homer on August 22 helped the Red Sox to a 6-5 win and a three-game sweep of Chicago.
Mientkiewicz's main contibution was his solid defense. A former Gold Glove winner, he had a .997 fielding percentage at first base, and even played well in one start at second base when both Mark Bellhorn and Pokey Reese were on the disabled list.
Mientkiewicz replaced Kevin Millar defensively in the seventh inning of Game 1 of the Division Series. He got a chance to contribute offensively in the eighth inning, dropping down a perfectly-placed bunt with two outs that scored Johnny Damon from third. He picked up another hit the next day in Game 2.
He saw his first ALCS action in Game 4. After Bill Mueller tied the game with his ninth-inning hit, Doug pinch-hit for Bellhorn, and sacrificed Mueller to second. He came in defensively the next night, too, just after the Sox had rallied to tie Game 5 in the eighth. He stayed in the game as it went extra innings, and hit a ground-rule double off Felix Heredia in the tenth.
Mientkiewicz closed out both Game 6 and Game 7 in the field. After contibuting to the Red Sox' tenth run of the night with a single in the ninth inning, he was involved in the final play of the series. Ruben Sierra hit a ground ball to second base, where Pokey Reese fielded it and flipped it to Doug to record the final out and send the team on to the World Series.
Doug picked up only one at-bat in the World Series, but he was on the field in the ninth inning of all four games. When Edgar Renteria hit a comebacker to the mound to end Game 4, Keith Foulke snared it and tossed it to Mientkiewicz at first to record the all-important final out that had eluded them for the past 86 years. Doug later loaned the ball from the final out to the Red Sox to be included in the display that traveled with the trophy all over Massachusetts and throughout New England.
The ball from the final out of the 2004 World Series is on display,
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