St. Louis Cardinals World Series win: Three questions to ponder
The St. Louis Cardinals had to claw back from series deficits to beat the Texas Rangers in Game 7 of the World Series. For Cardinals fans, the win was all the sweeter when hometown boy David Freese was named MVP.
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ARE THE RANGERS THE NEW RED SOX? The Rangers did not just lose. They lost in . . . well, let’s say it was deflating, the sense that you’re in a blimp at 5,000 feet and an asteroid bursts through the blimp itself and the whole thing collapses in flames. That kind of deflating.Skip to next paragraph
Twice they were one strike from winning. In the ninth inning of Game 6 Ranger right-fielder Nelson Cruz might have caught Freese’s shot to the base of the wall, bringing the championship back to Texas.
Cruz hit eight home runs in the post-season, so it’s not like he was an anvil on the team. But his ill-timed leap seemed Greek in its tragedy. Just like the kind of thing that used to happen to the Red Sox, before they became the Yankees of Cambridge.
Two words: Bill Buckner. We don’t even have to explain that, do we? People forget that the Red Sox took a lead in Game 7 of the 1986 World Series, only to lose to the New York Mets in the end. Just like the Rangers took a first inning 2-0 lead on Friday night, before losing.
ARE WALKS THE NEW HOME RUNS? When Game 6 was rained out in St. Louis on Wednesday night LaRussa went to see “Moneyball”, the movie in which Brad Pitt saves the Oakland A’s by emphasizing on-base percentage. The Cardinals skipper criticized the movie afterward, saying it ignored the fact that the A’s notoriously free-swinging shortstop Miguel Tejada had an MVP season that year, and said little about the team’s young and talented pitching rotation.
That’s ironic, in the sense that the Cardinals OBPd their way to this year’s title. The Texas pitching staff issued 41 walks in the World Series, a new record. Six of those came in Game 7. In the fifth inning the Cardinals scored twice on a bases-loaded walk and hit batsman.
“Maybe we tried to be a little bit too fine,” said Ranger reliever Mike Adams in a subdued Texas clubhouse. “I’m not sure. I can’t really explain why. Maybe we tried to be too perfect, and it came back and bit us.”
IN PICTURES: Fan Frenzy: World Series 2011