Valdosta Daily Times

Local Sports

October 29, 2013

World Series Game 5

ST. LOUIS —

Jon Lester pitched the Boston Red Sox within a whisker of yet another World Series championship.
 
Lester bested Adam Wainwright once again, journeyman David Ross hit a tiebreaking double in the seventh inning and the Red Sox downed the St. Louis Cardinals, 3-1, Monday night to take a 3-2 Series edge.
 
David Ortiz delivered his latest big hit, too, sending this bearded band of Red Sox back to Fenway Park with a chance to clinch their third crown in a decade. Not since 1918 has Boston won the title at its own ballpark.
 
John Lackey gets the first chance Wednesday night against St. Louis rookie sensation Michael Wacha. A Cardinals win would set up a most spooky proposition for both teams — Game 7 Halloween night.
 
Ortiz enjoyed even more success in Game 5 after moving from the cleanup spot to the third slot. He is 11-for-15 (.733) in this Series with two homers, six RBIs and four walks.
 
Lester looking better
 
Lester enhanced his reputation as an October ace with every pitch. He allowed one run and four hits in 7 2-3 innings, striking out seven without a walk. Nearly the same line he had in beating Wainwright in the opener.
 
“I think the biggest thing is me and Rossy have had a good rhythm,” Lester said. “Early on, we just went back to our game plan from Game 1 and just fell back on that and really just tried to make them swing the bats early, and we were able to do that.”
 
The lefty who’s won all three of his career World Series starts had just one scary inning, when Matt Holliday homered in the fourth, Carlos Beltran flied out to the wall and Yadier Molina hit a liner. Other than that, Lester was sharp.
 
“He’s just a stud,” Ross, the backup catcher who gets paired with Lester, said. “We rely on him. That’s why he’s the ace of our staff, because he goes out and pitches like that.”
 
Koji Uehara closed for his second save. No crazy endings this time, either, following one night with an obstruction call and the next with Uehara’s game-finishing pickoff.
 
Ortiz put the Red Sox ahead with an RBI double in the first, hitting the first pitch after Dustin Pedroia doubled on an 0-2 curve.
 
Ross, a graybeard on a team led by scraggly veterans, broke a 1-all tie when he hooked a drive just inside the left-field line, and the ball bounced into the seats for a go-ahead double.
 
“How about that? It’s nice to drive in runs,” Ross said. “I’ve got to credit the guys in front of me.”
 
Jacoby Ellsbury later hit an RBI single, and Ross was thrown out at the plate trying to score on the play.
 
Wainwright struck out 10 in seven innings, becoming the first Cardinals pitcher to reach double digits in the Series since Bob Gibson did it twice in 1968 against Detroit.
 
The Red Sox struck out 14 times, raising their total to a postseason-record 156. Boston began the day with 142, tied with the 2010 champion Giants.

 

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