Saturday, October 26, 2013

Cardinals v. Red Sox

Game Three of the World Series is about to get started in Busch Stadium.  We get real baseball, where the pitchers have to hit and everyone has to field.  Here are the lineups:

1.  Jacoby Ellsbury, cf
2.  Shane Victorino, rf
3.  Dustin Pedroia, 2b
4.  David Ortiz, 1b
5.  Daniel Nava, lf
6.  Xander Bogearts, 3b
7.  Jarrod Saltalamacchia, c
8.  Stephen Drew, ss
9.  Jake Peavy, p

The Red Sox have been playing Jonny Gomes in left field throughout much of the playoffs, even though Nava had a better regular season.  It's as if Gomes was a sort of good-luck charm.  But all the money is on the line now, and the Bosox have decided to go with their best players.

1.  Matt Carpenter, 2b
2.  Carlos Beltran, rf
3.  Matt Holliday, lf
4.  Matt Adams, 1b
5.  Yadier Molina, c
6.  David Freese, 3b
7.  Jon Jay, cf
8.  Pete Kozma, ss
9.  Joe Kelly, p

Any further thoughts will go in the comments.


  1. Boston goes down 1-2-3 in the top of the first.

    Red Sox 0, Cardinals coming up to bat.

  2. Matt Carpenter, who hasn't played all that well in the post-season, leads off the first inning with a single. Beltran bunts(!) him to second, and Holliday singles him home. See, that's how you do it.

    St. Louis leads 1-0.

  3. Now Adams has singled to right, and the Cardinals have men on first and second with one out. Jake Peavy does not look sharp.

  4. And now Molina singles to left to make the score 2-0! Boston's bullpen is already working.

  5. Peavy gets out of the inning with no further damage.

    After 1: St. Louis 2, Boston 0

    The Cardinals have a 71 percent chance of victory.

  6. Nothing of interest happened in the second inning.

    After 2: St. Louis 2, Boston 0

    The Cardinals have a 73 percent chance of victory.

  7. The Cardinals, by the way, are wearing cream-colored uniforms with "St. Louis" in script instead of the usual "Cardinals." Apparently they have worn this uniform during all of their Saturday home games this year.

    Oh, and they have mowed an Arch into the outfield.

  8. Boston goes down 1-2-3 in the third. Joe Kelly has retired nine Red Sox in a row to open the game.

  9. Two stupid plays in one. Holliday hits a huge pop up to center field. Ellsbury misjudges the ball and drops it. But then Holliday tries to dash to second, and gets caught between the bases. He is tagged out at first. Adams strikes out after that, and the third inning is over.

    After 3: St. Louis 2, Boston 0

    The Cardinals have a 75 percent chance of winning.

  10. Ellsbury leads off the top of the 4th with Boston's first hit of the game, a single to right.

  11. Victorino, who is now 0-10 in the World Series, fouls out to first.

  12. Pedroia, who has been great in this Series, crushes a ball to center field, but it is knocked down by the wind, and Jay hauls it down. Two out, Ortiz coming to bat.

    Kelly v. Ortiz:
    Pitch 1 (0-0): Ball low and away
    Pitch 2 (1-0): Ball
    Pitch 3 (2-0): Ball (I think they're pitching around Ortiz)
    Pitch 4 (3-0): Ball outside

    He was clearly walked on purpose. So Nava comes up with runners on first and second.

  13. Hershiser thinks that walk was a mistake.

    Kelly v. Nava:
    Pitch 1 (0-0); Foul
    Pitch 2 (0-1): Ball
    Pitch 3 (1-1): Ball
    Pitch 4 (2-1): Strike
    Pitch 5 (2-2): Foul (Molina goes out to talk to Kelly)
    Pitch 6 (2-2): Ball in the dirt
    Pitch 7 (3-2): (Runners going) Swinging strike!

    So the decision to pitch around Big Papi pays off, and the Cardinals preserve their 2-0 lead.

  14. Molina leads off the bottom of the 4th with a bloop single to center. He is not picked off trying to take second.

  15. Freese, who has been terrible in the series, draws a walk, and now the Cardinals have men on first and second with no one out. They could blow this game open right now.

    Boston's bullpen is getting back to work.

  16. Jay laces the first pitch up the middle for a single, and now the bases are loaded with no one out. Here comes Pete Kozma:

    Peavy v. Kozma:

    Pitch 1 (0-0): Ball low
    Pitch 2 (1-0): Foul pop (a desperate effort by Pedroia, but he can't get there. Napoli might have caught that)
    Pitch 3 (1-1): Ball outside
    Pitch 4 (2-1): Called strike (a great pitch on the outside corner)
    Pitch 5 (2-2): Called strike (another great pitch)

    A huge out.

  17. Kelly comes up trying to help his own cause. But he pops up to Pedroia. So now it's all up to Carpenter with two outs. But he pops up to Drew. The inning is over and the Cardinals do not score.

    After 4: St. Louis 2, Boston 0

    The Cardinals have a 77 percent chance of winning.

  18. Bogearts leads off the top of the 5th with an opposite-field triple that gets past Beltran and goes all the way to the right field wall. Back and forth these teams keep going.

  19. Saltalamacchia walks, and the Red Sox have runners on first and third with no one out. This brings up Stephen Drew, who is batting less than .100 in the post-season.

  20. Drew's woes continues, as he strikes out.

    Now Boston has to decide whether to bat for Peavy. They save Mike Napoli, and send up Mike Carp, who batted .296 with 9 homers in the regular season. Carp works the count to 3-1, and hits a chopper to second. Saltalamacchia is forced at second, and Bogaerts trots home.

    St. Louis 2, Boston 1

  21. Ellsbury strikes out and the inning is over.

    After 4 1/2, St. Louis leads 2-1. And Boston now needs a new pitcher.

  22. The Red Sox bring in Felix Doubront, who was a starter in the regular season. He went 11-6 with a 4.32 ERA.

  23. The Cardinals waste a two-out double from Matt Adams, and Doubront makes it through his first World Series inning.

    After 5: St. Louis 2, Boston 1

    The Cardinals have a 67 percent chance of winning.

  24. In the top of the 6th, Kelly walks Victorino, which is a huge mistake because you need to get him out with Pedroia and Ortiz coming up.

    Pedroia promptly comes up and crushes a line drive down the third-base line, but it is caught by Freese, who makes a very nice play.

    That's all for Kelly, and the Cardinals bring in their left-handed specialist, Randy Choate. He's here to face David Ortiz, who's a bit of a specialist himself.

    Choate v. Ortiz:

    Pitch 1 (0-0): Ball
    Pitch 2 (1-0): Called strike
    Pitch 3 (1-1): Foul
    Pitch 4 (1-2): Ortiz lashes a single to right, and Victorino goes to third. The Cardinals are finding it almost impossible to get him out.

  25. Well, Choate didn't get it done, so Seth Maness -- yet another Cardinal rookie -- comes in to face Nava.

    Maness v. Nava (1st and 3d, 1 out):

    Pitch 1 (0-0): Nava whacks a single to left, Victorino scores, Ortiz moves to second, and the game is tied.

    St. Louis 2, Boston 2

    The Cardinals bullpen has been great in the post-season, but it has failed them here.

  26. Maness gets Bogaerts to ground into a double play, and that ends the Boston 6th. But the Bosox have tied the score at 2.

  27. St. Louis goes down 1-2-3, as Doubront has another solid inning.

    After 6: St. Louis 2, Boston 2

    The Cardinals have a 50 percent chance of victory.

  28. The Cardinals bring in Kevin Siegrist to pitch the 7th.

  29. Siegrist retires Saltalamacchia, Middlebrooks (pinch-hitting for Drew), and Gomes (pinch-hitting for Doubront).

  30. The Red Sox are bringing in Breslow, who blew Game Two. He will face the top of the Cardinals' order.

  31. For Boston, Middlebrooks stays in to play third, and Bogaerts moves to short.

  32. Carpenter immediately hits a slow roller to Bogaerts. He makes a valiant effort, but Carpenter beats it out. The Cardinals have the lead run on first.

    Would Drew have made that play?

  33. Beltran comes up, and is hit on the elbow. He made no effort to get out of the way, and who can blame him.

    That's all for Breslow. The Red Sox are bringing in Junichi Tazawa to face Matt Holliday.

  34. With runners on first and second, and no one out, Fangraphs gives St. Louis a 72.4 percent chance of victory.

    Tazawa v. Holliday:

    Pitch 1 (0-0); Ball inside
    Pitch 2 (1-0): Swinging strike
    Pitch 3 (1-1): Holliday TRIPLES down the left field line. Carpenter scores. Beltran scores. The Cardinals lead 4-2!

  35. Technically, Holliday hit a double, and advanced to third on the throw. He has driven in three of St. Louis's runs in this game, and he is killing the Red Sox in this series.

  36. St. Louis now has a 94 percent chance of victory.

  37. Tazawa is pitching well -- the pitch Holliday hit was a good one. Tazawa then strikes out Adams and Molina. So unless Freese can get a hit, Holliday will be stranded at 3d.

  38. Freese walks, and Jay flies out. The inning is over.

    After 7: St. Louis 4, Boston 2

    The Cardinals have an 88 percent chance of victory.

  39. The Cardinals bring in Carlos Martinez, who was so good in Game Two, and he immediately gets into trouble. He gives up a single to Ellsbury and then hits Victorino (the 11th time Victorino has been hit by a pitch in the post-season).

  40. So now the lead run comes to the plate in the form of Pedroia:

    Martinez v. Pedroia:

    Pitch 1 (0-0): Strike
    Pitch 2 (0-1): Ball outside (Molina goes out to talk to Martinez)
    Pitch 3 (1-1): Ball high
    Pitch 4 (2-1): Fouled back
    Pitch 5 (2-2): Ball inside
    Pitch 6 (3-2): Pedroia grounds out to short, the runners advance to second and third.

  41. One out, runners on second and third, Ortiz is up. The Cardinals don't waste any time, and immediately walk Ortiz.

  42. That's all for Martinez. The Cardinals are going to Trevor Rosenthal right now, instead of waiting for the 9th inning.

  43. Rosenthal v. Nava (Bases loaded, one out):

    Pitch 1 (0-0): Called strike
    Pitch 2 (0-1): Foul (99 mph)
    Pitch 3 (0-2): Nava hits a short hop to Colton Wong at second (he just came into the game as part of a double switch). Ortiz is forced at second, but Nava beats the relay at first. Ellsbury scores.

    St. Louis 4, Boston 3

    1. I meant "Kolten Wong" He's yet another Cardinal rookie.

  44. Now we have Rosenthal v. Bogaerts (1st and 3d, two outs). Bogaerts hits a high chopper into center field, Victorino scores, Nava runs to third.

    St. Louis 4, Boston 4

    The Cardinals' two rookie relievers have blown their 2-run lead.

  45. Saltalamacchia grounds out to Wong to end the inning, but the game is tied once again -- and now, St. Louis has used almost all of its good relief pitchers.

  46. With all the changes in the game, the lineups have gotten scrambled. St. Louis's lineup now looks like this:

    Carpenter, 3b (2-4)
    Beltran, rf (0-2)
    Holliday, lf (2-4, 3 rbi's)
    Adams, 1b (2-4)
    Molina, c (2-3)
    Rosenthal, p (0-0)
    Jay, cf (1-4)
    Kozma, ss (0-3)
    Wong, 2b (0-0)

    Kozma will lead off the 8th.

  47. Boston brings in Brandon Workman to pitch the 8th.

  48. Kolten Wong, who has a lifetime batting average of .153 in his very short career (9-59), laces a one-out single into right field!

    Carpenter comes up with Wong on first and one out.

    Workman v. Carpenter:

    Pitch 1 (0-0): Ball
    Pitch 2 (1-0): Carpenter pops up to short. (Wong was on his way to steal second, but had to scramble back to first).

  49. So now it's up to Beltran (man on first, two out):

    Workman v. Beltran:

    Pitch 1 (0-0): Ball outside
    Pitch 2 (1-0): Called strike
    Pitch 3 (1-1): Ball inside
    Pitch 4 (2-1): Ball outside (Wong steals second)
    Pitch 5 (3-1): Intentional ball

    So Beltran is at first, Wong is at second, and Holliday is coming to the plate.

  50. Workman v. Holliday (men on first and second, two out):

    Pitch 1 (0-0): Fouled back
    Pitch 2 (0-1): Ball inside
    Pitch 3 (1-1): Holliday flies out to left, and the inning is over.

    After 8: St. Louis 4, Boston 4

    The Cardinals have a 50 percent chance of victory.

  51. Here's the current version of Boston's lineup:

    Ellsbury, cf (2-4)
    Victorino, rf (0-2, 2 runs)
    Pedroia, 2b (0-4)
    Ortiz, 1b (1-2)
    Nava, lf (1-4)
    Bogaerts, ss (2-4)
    Saltalamacchia, c (0-3)
    Middlebrooks, 3b (0-1)
    Workman, p (0-0)

    Middlebrooks will lead off the 9th. The Cardinals will go with Rosenthal for one more inning.

  52. The BoSox go down 1-2-3 (they let Workman bat for himself).

    So we are all tied going to the bottom of the 9th. The Cardinals will send up Adams, Molina, and the pitcher's spot.

  53. Molina comes up with one out and bloops a single into right center field.

    That's all for Workman. Boston is bringing in their closer, Koji Uehara. In 74 innings this year, Uehara had an ERA of 1.09.

  54. The Cardinals are putting in Allen Craig, who was their starting first baseman for most of the year, to bat for Rosenthal. Craig batted .315 with 97 RBI's in the regular season.

    Uehara v. Craig (man on first, one out):

    Pitch 1 (0-0): Craig laces a double into the left field corner. Molina advances to third.

  55. All night long, the Cardinals have been stranding runners at third. Can they get Molina home?

    Uehara v. Jay (2d and 3d, one out):

    Pitch 1 (0-0): Fouled back
    Pitch 2 (0-1): Jay lashes a hard-hit grounder to second. Pedroia, playing in close, makes a great play on the ball and throws out Molina at the plate. While Saltalamacchia is tagging Molina, Craig (who is still recovering from a foot injury) tries to take third. Saltalamacchia whips a quick throw to third -- AND THROWS THE BALL INTO LEFT FIELD. Craig tries to head home, but trips over Middlebrooks (the Boston third baseman) who fell in the dirt trying to catch Saltalamacchia's bad throw. Craig gets up and continues home. Meanwhile, Nava has scooped up the ball in left and throws home, where Saltalamacchia tags out Craig. But the umpire RULES THAT CRAIG IS SAFE DUE TO INTERFERENCE BY MIDDLEBROOKS AT THIRD.


  56. The Red Sox go nuts, and protest like Applegate at the end of "The Year the Yankees Lost the Pennant." But, as Applegate learned, arguing with an umpire does no good. And, I have to say, it seemed like the right call to me -- there's no question that Craig would have scored if he hadn't tripped over Middlebrooks.