Thursday, December 12, 2013
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Boston Red Sox designated hitter David Ortiz carries relief pitcher Koji Uehara after winning Game 6 of baseball's World Series against the St. Louis Cardinals Wednesday, Oct. 30, 2013, in Boston. The Red Sox won 6-1 to win the series. (AP Photo/David J. Phillip)
"It was an awesome atmosphere here tonight," Lackey said.
The win capped an emotional season for the Red Sox, one heavy with the memory of the events that unfolded on Patriots Day, when three people were killed and more than 260 wounded in bombing attacks at the Boston Marathon. The Red Sox wore "Boston Strong" logos on their left sleeves, erected a large emblem on the Green Monster and moved the logo into the center-field grass as a constant reminder.
"There's I think a civil responsibility that we have wearing this uniform, particularly here in Boston," Farrell said. "And it became a connection initially, the way our guys reached out to individuals or to hospital visits. And it continued to build throughout the course of the season. I think our fans, they got to a point where they appreciated the way we played the game, how they cared for one another. And in return they gave these guys an incredible amount of energy to thrive on in this ballpark."
Red, white and blue fireworks fired over the ballpark as Commissioner Bud Selig presented the World Series trophy to Red Sox owners John Henry, Tom Werner and Larry Lucchino, leaving a haze over the field.
"When the fireworks went off at the presentation of the trophy out there, when the ballpark was filled with smoke, it was completely surreal," Farrell said. "To be in this position, given where we've come from, reflecting back a year ago at this time, there's been a lot that's happened in 13 months."
Players then put on goggles for the champagne celebration in the cramped clubhouse.
"They had tremendous will," Henry said.
Among the players blamed for the indifferent culture at the end of the Francona years, Lackey took the mound two days shy of the second anniversary of his elbow surgery and got his first Series win since the 2002 clincher. He pitched shutout ball into the seventh, when Carlos Beltran's RBI single ended the Cardinals' slump with runners in scoring position at 0 for 14.
Junichi Tazawa came in with the bases loaded and retired Allen Craig on an inning-ending grounder to first. Brandon Workman followed in the eighth and Uehara finished.
St. Louis had been seeking its second title in three seasons, but the Cardinals sputtered after arriving in Boston late Tuesday following a seven-hour flight delay caused by mechanical problems. Symbolic of the team's struggles, reliever Trevor Rosenthal tripped while throwing a pitch to Ortiz in the eighth, balking Pedroia to second.
Pedroia had brought back memories of Carlton Fisk's 1975 Game 6-winning home run, sending a first-inning drive about 10 feet foul of the Green Monster foul pole — and waving his left arm once to try to urge the ball fair as he came out of the batter's box.
Lackey escaped a two-on, none-out jam in the second when he retired Matt Adams and David Freese on flyouts and, after a wild pitch, struck out Jon Jay. Boston wasted a similar threat in the bottom half, then went ahead on the third.
Jacoby Ellsbury singled leading off and took second on Pedroia's grounder. Ortiz was intentionally walked, Napoli struck out and Gomes was hit above the left elbow with a pitch, loading the bases.
Victorino, wearing red, white and blue spikes with an American flag motif, had been 0 for 10 in the Series and missed the previous two games with a bad back.
Dropped from second to sixth in the batting order, he took two balls and a called strike, then turned on a 93 mph fastball and sent it high off the 37-foot-high wall in left. Gomes slid home as Yadier Molina took Matt Holliday's one-hop throw and applied the tag, and the catcher then argued with plate umpire Jim Joyce.
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