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Ortiz forces Game 5 with dramatic homer

BOSTON (AP) -- David Ortiz's drive into the right-field bullpen
set off a frenzy at Fenway and gave the Boston Red Sox a shot at
pulling off the greatest comeback ever.

Down to their last three outs of the season, the Red Sox rallied
-- against Mariano Rivera, the New York Yankees and decades of
disappointment.

Bill Mueller singled home the tying run off Rivera in the ninth
inning and Ortiz homered against Paul Quantrill to end it in the
12th, giving Boston a do-or-die 6-4 victory over the Yankees early
Monday that avoided a four-game sweep in the AL championship
series.

"This is a team that never gives up," Ortiz said.

Red Sox fans who had been praying, holding hands and hoping
against hope a few innings earlier, burst into cheers when Ortiz
connected. Long after Sunday turned into Monday, there was still
plenty of energy inside old Fenway Park.

Even Ortiz danced home to his teammates waiting at the plate.

"We always find a way to make it hard for ourselves," Red Sox
starter Derek Lowe said.

This game lasted 5 hours, 2 minutes and ended at 1:22 a.m. ET,
marking the second back-to-back marathon these teams have played.
Saturday's 19-8 win by the Yankees took 4 hours, 20 minutes. The
teams had about 15 hours to get ready for Game 5, which starts at
5:10 p.m. with Pedro Martinez pitching for the Red Sox against
Mike Mussina.

"Everybody's going to have trouble sleeping, probably except
maybe from exhaustion," Yankees manager Joe Torre said.

Of the 25 previous teams to fall behind 3-0 in a best-of-seven
series, 20 were swept, three lost in five games and two lost in
six. The Red Sox say if they win again, injured Curt Schilling
would be ready to start Tuesday in New York.

"We've just got to get to Game 6," Red Sox manager Terry
Francona said.

Quantrill, New York's fifth pitcher, relieved Tom Gordon to
start the 12th and allowed a leadoff single to Manny Ramirez.
Ortiz's shot on a 2-1 pitch landed in the right-field bullpen.

"Ortiz is just a great hitter and he beat me," Quantrill said.

Boston was facing a disappointing end to a successful season
when Rivera walked Kevin Millar to lead off the ninth.

"You put the walk away, and it would have been totally
different," Rivera said. "It wasn't the way I planned it today."

After some pickoff throws, pinch-runner Dave Roberts stole
second on the first pitch to Mueller.

"The three pickoff moves got me back into the game. I hadn't
played in a while, and it helped me get rid of the jitters,"
Roberts said.

Mueller then lined the ball up the middle as Roberts easily
scored and Rivera swung his right arm in disgust. He has blown just
four saves in 36 postseason chances, but two have come this year.
He has lost to Boston twice during the regular season.

"It certainly is disappointing," Torre said. "We're so used
to Mo going out there and getting people out, which he did tonight.
It's just that the walk and stolen base was the difference in that
ninth inning."

Doug Mientkiewicz followed with a sacrifice, and Johnny Damon
hit a hopper to first that Tony Clark, playing in place of injured
John Olerud, fumbled for an error. That left runners at first and
third.

Orlando Cabrera struck out, the Yankees let Damon take second
and Ramirez walked, loading the bases for Ortiz, who flied to
right.

With closer Keith Foulke already having pitched 2 2/3 innings,
Alan Embree came in and got through the 10th. Curtis Leskanic
escaped an 11th-inning jam by getting Bernie Williams on a
bases-loaded flyout, then stranded a runner at second in the 12th
by striking out Miguel Cairo.

"Their bullpen did a great job. They made pitches when they had
to," Jeter said. "We definitely let opportunities get by."

The Yankees, who stranded 14 runners, took a 2-0 lead in the
third. After Jeter singled with two outs off Lowe, Alex Rodriguez
hit a drive to left field over an advertising sign atop the Green
Monster, his second homer in two nights.

Sidelined since Oct. 1 with a tired shoulder, Yankees starter
Orlando Hernandez baffled Boston with pitches ranging from a 91 mph
fastball to a 55 mph curve. Then, in the fifth, the Red Sox went
ahead 3-2 on three walks, Cabrera's RBI single and Ortiz's two-run
single.

The Yankees came back to score twice in the sixth, with
Hideki Matsui starting the rally with a one-out triple. But it was a
series of tricklers and rollers that scored the runs that put them
ahead 4-3.

Groans from fans could be heard when Francona walked to the
mound and brought in Mike Timlin to face Williams, who hit a slow
bouncer to shortstop. But Cabrera couldn't pick it up with his bare
hand and the slow-footed Matsui scored.

After Jorge Posada walked, Williams was thrown out at third
trying to advance on a ball that skipped away from catcher
Jason Varitek.

Ruben Sierra followed with a grounder that gave second baseman
Mark Bellhorn no chance for a play at first. Clark hit a hard
grounder that kicked off Bellhorn's glove for another infield hit
as Posada scored.

That was New York's final run. Jeter, as always, searched for a
positive.

"We know they're not going to give up," he said. "But we're
exactly in the position we want to be in."

Game notes
Ray Boone, who died Sunday, was honored with a moment of
silence before the game. His grandson, Aaron, hit the home run that
won Game 7 of the ALCS for the Yankees last year.