Date/Time: October 26th, 8:07 PM ET
Probable Starters: Peavy (Boston) vs. Kelly (St. Louis)
Moneyline: Boston -110
The Boston Red Sox and the St. Louis Cardinals both showed their jitters in the first two games of the World Series, as both made errors that helped cost them games. Now, they are going to bring this series back to Busch Stadium for the first of three games on Saturday night.
The Red Sox have probably been the slightly better of these two teams, but there is a real concern about their mental state. They had a real chance to go up 2-0 in this series before booting away a shot at the commanding series lead, and now, they are going to have to regroup on their day off to get back in the saddle. It also can’t be all that comforting that RHP Jake Peavy is the man scheduled to go in this one. Peavy was blasted for seven runs in three innings of work against the Detroit Tigers in his one start in the ALCS, and he was run after throwing just 65 pitches. In fact, Peavy has only tossed 139 pitches in total in these playoffs, so he probably should be well-rested. The righty went 12-5 on the season in his time with the Red Sox and the Chicago White Sox, but a 4.17 ERA from that time is definitely something worth watching.
It really looked as though DH David Ortiz was going to be the death of the Cardinals once again. Big Papi already has five RBIs in this series, which is the same amount of total runs scored that the entire St. Louis team has, and his two-run dong on Thursday really should have given Boston that commanding 2-0 lead that we discussed earlier. It wasn’t the prettiest inning in the world, but St. Louis successfully scratched out three runs in the seventh inning to ultimately win Game 2, largely thanks to OF Carlos Beltran coming up with a huge hit to keep the rally going. Remember that now that we are back in the National League, DH Allen Craig or 1B Matt Adams has to sit, but Boston has the same problem (and what amounts to be a much bigger one at that) with either 1B Mike Napoli or Ortiz having to sit. The pitching edge though, isn’t there for St. Louis. Peavy isn’t the toughest customer in the world, but RHP Joe Kelly hasn’t been good in these playoffs. He has allowed at least two runs in each of his starts, and he hasn’t left the team in a situation where it can win games when he exits.
The Cardinals have the huge edge of playing by National League rules here, as they are used to playing without Craig. To take Big Papi out of the lineup would be a devastating blow for Boston, and if he plays first base, he will be a huge liability there defensively. We’ll take our chances with Kelly over Peavy as well with the home field advantage on our side, and we’ll go after the Cards on Saturday night.
Boston Red Sox @ St. Louis Cardinals Pick: St. Louis Cardinals +100
is a staff writer living in the Orlando area. He has covered NFL, MLB, college football, CFL, AFL, NBA, college basketball, NASCAR, golf, tennis, and the NHL for a number of various outlets in his career, and he has been published by a number of different media outlets, including the Orlando Sentinel and the Wall Street Journal.