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Updated: October 30, 2013
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Copyright © 1997-2013
Grand Slam/Marco Stoovelaar
Compiled and Copyright © 1997-2013 by Marco Stoovelaar

Boston Red Sox win World Series
BOSTON, Massachusetts (USA) - The Boston Red Sox are the new champion of the Major League-champion after winning Game 6 of the World Series vs. St. Louis Cardinals on Wednesday-evening (October 30) with a convincing 6-1 score. With this, Boston won the World Series 4-2 to capture their eighth championship-title. It was the first time since 1918 that the Red Sox won the title at home in Fenway Park.

For the Red Sox, this was their third championship in the last ten years. The first of these three was captured in 2004 when the BoSox swept the Cardinals to win its first title in 86 years, which was 1918. In 2007, the Red Sox won its next World Series when it also swept Colorado Rockies.

Before the game, the ceremonial first pitches were thrown by former pitcher Luis Tiant and former catcher Carlton Fisk. They were the heroes for Boston in Game 6 of the 1975 World Series at Fenway Park vs. Cincinnati Reds, which was the last time a Game 6 was played in Boston. Tiant started and pitched seven innings, while Fisk hit a walk-off homerun in the 12th inning that gave Boston a 7-6 win. The image of Fisk standing at the plate watching the ball and 'waving' it to fair territory has become famous. The next day, the Reds won Game 7, 4-3 after the Red Sox had led 3-0 after three innings.

In 1986, the Red Sox again were close to a World Series-title, leading 3-2 in the eighth inning of Game 6 vs. New York Mets in Shea Stadium. But in the home of the eighth inning, the Mets came alongside. In the tenth inning, Boston scored twice to take a 5-3 lead. In the bottom half, a single and wild pitch tied the score, then the Mets won 6-5 when first baseman Bill Buckner led the ball go through his legs, which also became a famous image. The next day, the Mets won Game 7 and the Series 8-5 after Boston again had led 3-0 in the sixth inning.

It was all contributed to the legendary 'Curse of the Bambino'. In 1918, the Red Sox had won its last World Series with Babe Ruth as one of its players. In January of 1920, Ruth, who was nicknamed 'Bambino', was purchased by the New York Yankees. There, he became the famous slugger we all know and celebrated many successful seasons. Boston never won another World Series, until 86 years later when it swept the Cardinals in 2004.

Tonight, St. Louis-starter Michael Wacha held Boston scoreless in the first two innings, despite getting runners on base. In the first inning, he walked David Ortiz with two outs, but then struckout Mike Napoli. In the second at bat, he gave up a lead-off single to Jonny Gomes and then walked Shane Victorino. But then Xander Bogaerts and Stephen Drew both popped out and Wacha this time ended by striking out David Ross.

The Red Sox then opened the score in the third inning, scoring three runs. Jacoby Ellsbury led off with a single and advanced on a grounder by Dustin Pedroia. To create a force play (and of course to get by the powerhitter), David Ortiz was walked intentionally. Wacha then struckout Mike Napoli again, but hit next batter Jonny Gomes to load the bases. Next, Shane Victorino cleared the bases with a 3-run double off of the Green Monster in leftfield. Gomes scored the third run in a close play at the plate, while Victorino moved to third on the throw. But he stranded there when Xander Bogaerts lined out. Victorino had missed the previous two games with stiffness in his lower back.

Boston had another 3-run rally in the fourth at bat. Stephen Drew led off with a homerun, then Jacoby Ellsbury doubled with one out. With two outs, Ortiz was walked intentionally again, then Lance Lynn was brought in to relief Wacha. But he was greeted with an RBI-single by Mike Napoli and walked Jonny Gomes, which loaded the bases. Shane Victorino then again was successful, as he connected for an RBI-single that lifted the lead to 6-0. With the bases still loaded, Seth Maness became the new pitcher and he ended the inning by striking out Xander Bogaerts.

John Lackey started for Boston. While he pitched well, he saw St. Louis reach base frequently, but was supported with fine defense.

Lackey retired the side in the first inning, but then righthander then gave up lead-off singles to Allen Craig and Yadier Molina in the second at bat. A line out and flyout followed, then Lackey uncorked a wild pitch that moved the runners, but they were left as Jon Jay struckout.

In the third inning, Lackey gave up an one-out single to Matt Carpenter, but was supported with a double play. In the fourth, he gave up an out-out single to Craig, then Molina reached on an error. This time, the runners stranded, as a line out and strikeout followed.

In the fifth, Lackey gave up two more basehits. First, a lead-off single to Jon Jay, then an one-out single to Matt Carpenter, followed by two flyouts that ended the at bat.

After Lackey retired the side in the sixth inning, he started the seventh with two outs. But then Daniel Descalso singled and Matt Carpenter doubled. Carlos Beltran added another single to bring in Descalso and make it a 6-1 score. A wild pitch followed to move the runners, then the bases got loaded when Matt Holliday walked. Junichi Tazawa took over the pitching from Lackey and ended the inning when Allen Craig grounded out.

After new pitcher Brandon Workman had retired the Cardinals in a row in the top of the eighth inning, Boston got into scoring position again in the bottom half. Randy Choate, the sixth St. Louis-pitcher, walked lead-off hitter Jacoby Ellsbury and was relieved by Trevor Rosenthal. Ellsbury was then forced out on a grounder by Dustin Pedroia, but then was awarded second base moments later when Rosenthal committed a balk. David Ortiz then received his third intentional pass (and fourth walk overall) of the evening, which was followed by the fourth strikeout in the game for Mike Napoli. The inning then ended when Jonny Gomes grounded out.

Closer Koji Uehara took the mound for the Red Sox in the top of the ninth inning and settled things quickly. Jon Jay and Daniel Descalso both flied out. The Japanese pitcher then ended the game, the World Series and the 2013 Major League-season by striking out Matt Carpenter.

And with this, Aruban-born Xander Bogaerts became the first Dutch player to win a World Series since Dutch-born pitcher Bert Blyleven won the Series with the Minnesota Twins in 1987.

(October 30)

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Copyright © 1997-2013 Marco Stoovelaar / Grand Slam * Stats & News.