The final score of 6-1 in favor of the Boston Red Sox in Game 6 of the World Series was much closer than the score would indicate. The problem for the St. Louis Cardinals, was that the team couldn’t deliver in the clutch when they had their chances.
The Cardinals left nine runners on base and went 1 for 9 with runners in scoring position.
2nd inning: Runners on first and second, no outs. Adams, Freese and Jay failed. Jay struck out with runners on second and third.
4th inning: Runners on first and second, one out, following an error by Dustin Pedroia. Adams lined out, Freese struck out.
5th inning: Runners on first and second, one out. Beltran and Holliday both fly out.
7th inning: After rallying with two outs to score their only run of the game, the Cardinals chased Sox starter John Lackey, but Allen Craig, clutch so many times this season, (almost 50% of the time in that position) grounded out weakly to first.
The Boston bullpen retired the final seven hitters they faced to close out the game.
The bats at the bottom of the order failed for the Cardinals. Adams, .136, Freese, .158, Jay, .167, Descalso, .100, Kozma, .000. Prior to Game 6, even Matt Carpenter struggled, hitting .227 in the leadoff spot until his 3 for 5 night, but by then, it was too late.
After getting a look at Michael Wacha earlier in the series, the Sox looked better prepared and as manager Mike Matheny described it after the game, when Wacha just missed his spots, Boston capitalized.
The home team got a shot in the arm from Shane Victorino, who missed the previous two games. He drove in four runs, including a bases loaded double in the third that started off the scoring. For the second time in the series, Wacha gave up a home run…a solo shot to Stephen Drew to lead off the start of a three-run, fourth inning.
Some of the numbers:
–The Red Sox won the World Series despite a BA of .211, the lowest by a winner since the 1972 A’s (.209).
–The Red Sox finished with a team ERA of 1.84 in the World Series, the lowest by an AL team in a single World Series since the 1983 Orioles (1.60), who also won.
–Michael Wacha tried to become the 7th rookie to win an elimination game for his team. The last? John Lackey in 2002 with the Angels.
–The last time a starter allowed six or more runs in a deciding game of a World Series was Game 7 in 1967. Jim Lonborg of the Red Sox allowed seven runs (six earned) to the Cardinals and took the loss.
Those facts and stats from the Elias Sports Bureau and ESPN.com