Redbirds resurgent: Cardinals erupt in seventh, win 4-2

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by JJ Bailey / BaseballStL

KMOV.com

Posted on October 24, 2013 at 7:18 PM

Updated Friday, Oct 25 at 8:56 AM

(BaseballStL) -- Defensive mishaps seem to be the storyline early in the World Series. After the Cardinals paid the price for shoddy work in the field in Game 1, Boston wrote their own chapter in the "how not to play defense" guidebook Thursday night. 

The seventh inning proved fraught with peril for the Red Sox, as two errors in one play would ultimately give the Cardinals a two-run lead.

John Lackey had been strong early in the game, surrendering only two bloopers before Matt Holliday blasted a ball off the center field wall for a leadoff triple in the fourth inning.

After a line out to Dustin Pedroia by Matt Adams, the Cardinals notched a run with a ground ball by Yadier Molina. One is all the Redbirds would take as David Freese followed Allen Craig's walk with a ground out. 

St. Louis, having struggled to mount any offense after Holliday's triple, chased Lackey in the seventh after Freese coaxed a one-out walk and Jon Jay followed with a single. 

Pete Kozma would come in to run for Freese when Boston brought Craig Breslow in for Lackey. Kozma and Jay would execute a double steal, and Danial Descalso would walk to load the bases. 

Matt Carpenter flied a ball to left, and Kozma tagged to score. Jonny Gomes' throw to the plate was mishandled by Saltalamacchia, and Breslow attempted to catch Jay as he took third. 

His throw sailed down the line and Jay scored, giving the Cardinals a 3-2 advantage with Descalso on third.

"I believe it is a momentum sport. I don't think there are statistics to back it, but I do know when we're able to turn that around, what our environment is inside our clubhouse and our dugout," said Mike Matheny after the game. "These guys feed off each other."

Carlos Beltran picked up his first World Series RBI on a single in the next at-bat, pushing the lead to 4-2. 

Boston's runs came when Michael Wacha's dominance was finally broken, and it took one of the most notoriously dangerous postseason hitters to do it.

After nearly reaching Bob Gibson's franchise record of 19 straight scoreless postseason innings, Wacha surrendered a two-run blast to David Ortiz in the sixth inning.

Wacha didn't allow a hit until the third, a broken bat duck snort that landed just out of the reach of shortstop Daniel Descalso. 

In the sixth Wacha issued a one-out walk to Pedroia, putting a runner on for Ortiz's 17th postseason blast. 

"A good hitter like Ortiz, I made a mistake, 3‑2 change‑up up in the zone, and he made me pay," Wacha said. "I was pretty mad coming in, but Yadi came up and was like, 'Don't worry. Just hold them here. We're going to score in the top of the 7th.' Sure enough we put up a big three spot."

That would be all the Red Sox could muster, as the young Cardinal bullpen took control to close the game. Carlos Martinez threw two scoreless innings and before passing the baton to Trevor Rosenthal who sat the Boston challengers in sequence to end the game. 

Now the series returns to St. Louis, something the Cardinal skipper said is a welcome change, despite the historic air of Fenway Park.

"Excited to get home. I know everybody is.  Being able to take the World Series back to St. Louis and have our home fan base supporting us," he said. "It meant a lot to be able to play here in Fenway.  It's a pretty unique experience for a lot of guys that have never played here before to be able to do it on this stage. But there's no place like home, there's no doubt about it."

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JJ Bailey covers the Cardinals for KMOV.com and the BaseballStL app. Follow him on twitter @TheJJBailey and on @baseballstl_app for updates.  

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