The Boston Red Sox beat the St. Louis Cardinals 6-1 Wednesday to win the World Series, using timely hits by outfielder Shane Victorino, a gritty pitching performance by starter John Lackey, and the feared bat of 37-year-old designated hitter David Ortiz to capture its third world championship in a decade.
Victorino, 32, who had missed two games with a bad back, started the scoring in the 3rd with a bases-loaded double that brought in three runs. He drove in another run an inning later.
Ortiz scored twice, after being walked in his first three at-bats (twice intentionally). He had gone 11-for-15 for a .733 average through five games. He struck out in the 6th inning, and was walked again in the 8th. For the series, Ortiz reached base 19 times in 25 plate appearances, had among the highest batting averages ever in a series, and was named the Most Valuable Player.
Lackey took a shutout into the 7th inning, despite having allowed six hits.
Lackey gave up three more hits in the 7th inning — and his second wild pitch of the night — and St. Louis got its only run on a two-out single by Carlos Beltran.
St. Louis starting pitcher Michael Wacha, a 22-year-old rookie who had been sensational throughout the playoffs, was hit hard and took the loss.
Boston won its eighth World Series dating to baseball’s first, in 1903, when it won under the name the Boston Americans. It also won in 1912, 1915, 1916, 1918, 2004 and 2007. This was the first time Boston clinched a series at home since 1918.
Ortiz is the only Red Sox player remaining from the 2004 team championship team, which broke an 86-year drought for the franchise.
This year, the Red Sox and Cardinals were the league’s best teams, with identical 97-65 regular-season records.
The Red Sox were just 69-93 in 2012 under manager Bobby Valentine, who was fired. This year, with manager John Farrell, they became the second team to win the World Series a year after finishing in last place.