Thursday, October 24, 2013

Red Sox Take Game 1

The Red Sox are one step closer to becoming world champions after beating the Cardinals 8-1 in the first game of the World Series last night.

It was an easy win for the Red Sox, who built a big lead early and never looked back. Adam Wainwright didn't have his best stuff, but the Cardinals' defense let him down right from the get go. In the bottom of the first Pete Kozma flubbed the catch on what would have started an inning-ending double play, the first of three St. Louis errors. Boston's next batter--Mike Napoli--made him pay dearly for it by delivering a bases-clearing double that gave Boston the early 3-0 advantage.

 From there things only got worse for the Cards, who kept making costly mistakes and fell behind 5-0 by the end of the next inning. It could have easily been 8-0 if David Ortiz's heart-stopping sacrifice fly had traveled just a few feet more, but Carlos Beltran was able to reach over the right field fence and snag the would-be grand slam before it could leave the yard (Beltran suffered a bruised rib on the play and was forced to leave the game--he is day-to-day. Not to be denied, Ortiz took Kevin Siegrist deep in the seventh to add to his impressive playoff track record).

After that it was smooth sailing for the Sox. St. Louis did make some noise when they loaded the bases in the fourth, but failed to score because October legend David Freese grounded into an inning-ending double play. The Cardinals didn't get too many more chances against Jon Lester, who continued his stellar postseason with 7 and 2/3 shutout innings and eight Ks. Junichi Tazawa finished out the eighth for him and a rusty Ryan Dempster, after allowing a solo shot to Matt Holliday, got the final three outs to make the win official.

And with that, the Red Sox have now won nine World Series games in a row. They haven't suffered a defeat in the Fall Classic since Game 7 of the 1986 Series. October veteran John Lackey will look to keep the streak alive tonight versus rookie Michael Wacha, who's permitted only one earned run in 21 innings of work this fall.

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