Rockies - 100 000 000 - 1 5 0
Red Sox - 000 110 00x - 2 6 1
IP H R BB K BF PIT
Schilling 5.1 4 1 2 4 22 82
Okajima 2.1 0 0 0 4 7 28
Papelbon 1.1 1 0 0 2 4 16
Well, I stand up next to a mountainThe Rockies took a quick 1-0 in the top of the first when Curt Schilling's fourth pitch grazed Willie Taveras's left hand, Matt Holliday's line drive glanced off Mike Lowell's glove and rolled into foul terriroty, and Todd Helton grounded out to first.
I chop it down with the edge of my hand
Boston tied the game in the fourth: Lowell walked, hustled to third on J.D. Drew's single to right (he reached base four times in four trips) and tagged and scored on Jason Varitek's fly to center. The Red Sox took a 2-1 lead with two outs in the fifth: David Ortiz walked, Manny Ramirez singled to left and Lowell doubled into the left field corner.
Holding that 2-1 lead in the top of the sixth, Schilling had trouble getting loose and surrendered a single and a walk with one out. Terry Francona did not mess around -- now in full playoff mode, Tito pulled the trigger earlier than he normally would during the season. G38 was at only 82 pitches, but it was time to summon the members of the Black Pearl.
Hideki Okajima got Garrett Atkins on a grounder to Kevin Youkilis and the runners moved up to second and third. But Brad Hawpe was overmatched -- swinging at strike one, looking at strike two and swinging at strike three. Crisis averted.
Jeemer needed only 11 pitches in the seventh: Troy Tulowitzki popped to right, Yorvit Torrealba grounded to short and Ryan Spilborghs struck out looking. In the eighth, Okajima struck out Taveras looking and Kaz Matsui swinging. With four outs remaining, Francona went to Jonathan Papelbon.
On an 0-2 pitch, Holliday smashed a line drive past Bot that Dustin Pedroia dove and gloved behind second, but he had no play. No matter. Bot immediately picked Holliday off first, catching him napping by some two or three feet to end the inning. In the ninth, Snuffer struck out Helton, got Atkins to line out to Jacoby Ellsbury in center and he fanned Hawpe.
And so the Red Sox are two wins away from another World Series championship. It feels inevitable -- and easy -- and fun.
Rockies Red SoxThe bottom of the lineup returns to its usual form -- with Drew at #6 ahead of Varitek and Ellsbury back at #8, with Lugo at the bottom.
Willy Taveras, CF Dustin Pedroia, 2B
Kaz Matsui, 2B Kevin Youkilis, 1B
Matt Holliday, LF David Ortiz, DH
Todd Helton, 1B Manny Ramirez, LF
Garrett Atkins, 3B Mike Lowell, 3B
Brad Hawpe, RF J.D. Drew, RF
Troy Tulowitzki, SS Jason Varitek, C
Yorvit Torrealba, C Jacoby Ellsbury, CF
Ryan Spilborghs, DH Julio Lugo, SS
BP's Joe Sheehan believes that Coco Crisp's "knee injury is a convenient cover for the fact that 2008 has come early in Boston. Ellsbury is this team's center fielder right now".
Over their last four games -- three must-wins and the opening game of the World Series -- the Red Sox have outscored their opponents 43-6. They are also the first team in baseball history to score 10+ runs in three consecutive post-season games.
Keep it going.
Ubaldo Jiminez (4.28, 112 ERA+, Game Log) / Curt Schilling (3.87, 122 ERA+, Game Log)
Schilling is pitching on four days rest for the first time since September 10.