Mike Napoli hit a three-run double and Jon Lester pitched 7 2/3 scoreless innings as the Boston Red Sox won the opening game of Major League Baseball’s World Series 8-1 against the St. Louis Cardinals.
The teams meet tonight at Boston’s Fenway Park for Game 2 in the best-of-seven series.
Lester (1-0), who has pitched 13 1/3 straight shutout innings in the World Series, gave up five hits and struck out eight batters. He won the final game of the 2007 World Series with 5 2/3 shutout innings as Boston completed a four-game sweep of the Colorado Rockies with a 4-3 victory.
“He was locating both sides of the plate,” Boston’s Dustin Pedroia said in a televised interview.
Napoli gave the Red Sox a 3-0 lead in the first inning when he drove home Jacoby Ellsbury, Pedroia and David Ortiz. Pedroia hit a run-scoring single and Ortiz’s sacrifice fly scored David Ross in the second inning.
Ortiz was robbed of a grand slam when Carlos Beltran reached over the right-field wall to make the catch. Beltran crashed into the wall and left the game in the third inning with bruised ribs. X-rays were negative and he’s day-to-day, Cardinals manager Mike Matheny said.
Ortiz was not to be denied his 16th home run in postseason play as he blasted the ball to right field for a two-run homer off Kevin Siegrist in the seventh inning. Xander Bogaerts’s sacrifice fly drove in Daniel Nava for the final run for the Red Sox in the eighth.
Matt Holliday hit a solo home run in the ninth inning for the Cardinals’ only score.
Adam Wainwright (0-1) took the loss after giving up five runs on six hits and striking out four in five innings.
“We had a wake-up call,” Matheny said.
The Red Sox loaded the bases in the first inning on a walk, a single and an error before Napoli cleared them with his double to left-center field. The error by shortstop Pete Kozma came on a play on which umpires overruled their original call of a forceout.
“They wanted to get the call right,” said Matheny. “Five of them got together. The explanation was that it was a play they had never seen before.”
Boston manager John Farrell challenged the call, saying there was “no entry of the ball into the glove.”
“Surprisingly they overturned it and got it right,” he said during a news conference.