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World Series Preview from The Sports Network



Thursday, October 24th (All times Eastern)

St. Louis Cardinals (7-5) at Boston Red Sox (8-3), 8:07 p.m.

Probable Starting Pitchers: St. Louis - Michael Wacha (3-0, 0.43) Boston - John Lackey (2-0, 3.00)

(SportsNetwork.com) - There hasn't been a better starting pitcher this postseason than St. Louis right-hander Michael Wacha. The Cardinals will need their rookie to be sharp once again if they want to avoid going home in an 0-2 World Series hole.

St. Louis and Wacha try to even the best-of-seven Fall Classic at a game apiece on Thursday when they play Game 2 versus the Boston Red Sox at Fenway Park.

The 2012 first-rounder, who was the compensation pick the Cardinals received from the Los Angeles Angels when Albert Pujols left as a free agent, has been absolutely magnificent this postseason. He outdueled Los Angeles' Clayton Kershaw twice in the NLCS and has won all three of his postseason starts, while pitching to a 0.43 ERA.

"I want the ball in big situations," Wacha said. "There's none bigger than the World Series."

Since closing the regular season with 8 2/3 no-hit innings, Wacha, the NLCS MVP, has pitched 21 postseason innings, limiting the Pittsburgh Pirates and Dodgers to one run on eight hits.

"He throws hard," Boston outfielder Shane Victorino said. "That's about all I know. I'll watch some video, see what he features. I understand he's good. That's why he was NLCS MVP, not for any reason besides the fact that he's good."

St. Louis will need him to be on his game Thursday after it was shut down by Jon Lester in Game 1. Lester limited the Cardinals to five hits and struck out eight over 7 2/3 scoreless innings as Boston took Game 1, 8-1.

The Red Sox jumped on Adam Wainwright early via Mike Napoli's three-run double in the first inning, and David Ortiz added a home run and three RBI in the rout -- Boston's ninth straight World Series victory.

St. Louis did not record an extra-base hit against Lester (1-0), committed three errors and lost All-Star slugger Carlos Beltran to a right rib contusion in the second inning when the right fielder robbed Ortiz of a grand slam.

"We had a wake-up call," said St. Louis manager Mike Matheny. "This is not the kind of team that we've been all season. And they're frustrated, I'm sure embarrassed to a point. You're going to have games like that periodically. But if you begin to accept that, then this could really not go anywhere."

X-rays and a CT scan came back negative, and Beltran is considered day-to-day.

Wainwright (0-1) only lasted five frames after getting touched for five runs -- three earned -- on six hits for the NL champs, whose only offense came on Matt Holliday's home run in the ninth.

"We went right after them. We pounded them in," said Lester, who became the third pitcher in World Series history to post scoreless starts in his first two Fall Classic outings. "We wanted to set the tone and get them swinging."

History could be on the Red Sox' side as nine of the last 10 and 14 of the previous 16 Game 1 winners have gone on to win the series. Also, since 1993, every home team to win Game 1 has gone on to win the World Series.

Boston will turn to another battle-tested veteran in Game 2 in John Lackey, who hasn't pitched in the World Series since Game 7 in 2002, when -- as a rookie -- he led the Angels to their first championship.

"It is a big game," Lackey said. "There's no running from that. And it's something you've got to embrace. It's something you've got to enjoy."

If anyone doubted whether or not Lackey was fully recovered from Tommy John surgery they need to look no further than his Game 3 performance against the Detroit Tigers that saw him outduel Justin Verlander and give control of the ALCS to the Red Sox.

Lackey, who will be pitching on eight days' rest Thursday night, tossed 6 2/3 scoreless innings in that one and is 2-0 this postseason with a 3.00 ERA.

"This is a veteran with a lot of success in the past, including postseason success," said Red Sox skipper John Farrell. "Given the challenges he's come through in the time he's been in Boston, we're glad he's not only come back from Tommy John, but regained the form he had pre-injury."

Lackey has pitched to a 3.10 ERA in 91 postseason innings, but has never faced the Cardinals at any point in his 11-year career.

"They're good," said Lackey, who had a 2.47 ERA at home this season. "They're in the World Series. There's no bad teams left. They've got a really good offense. It's really deep. Really similar to an American League lineup, for sure."

Game 3 of this series is scheduled for Saturday at Busch Stadium.

10/24 10:18:58 ET

  • CBB: North Carolina vs. Ohio State

    Today at 1:00 pm on WRAL-TV

  • CBB: UCLA vs Kentucky

    Today at 3:30 pm on WRAL-TV

  • NFL: San Diego at San Francisco

    Tonight at 8:25 on WRAL-TV

  • NFL: Panthers vs. Cleveland

    Monday at 1:00 pm on WRAL-TV

  • CBB: UCLA at Kentucky

    Today at 3:15 pm on 99.9 The Fan

  • NFL: Philadelphia at Washington

    Today at 4:25 pm on 620am

  • NHL: Canes vs. NY Rangers

    Tonight at 7:00 on 99.9 The Fan

  • CBB: NC State at West Virginia

    Tonight at 9:30 on WRAL-FM

Scoreboard
Local
Final
PHI 91
CHA 109
1:00pm Today
UNC
OSU
 
4:00pm Today
MVSU
NCCU
 
7:00pm Tonight
UNCW
ECU
 
7:00pm Tonight
CAR
NYR
 
7:00pm Tonight
CHA
UTA
 
9:30pm Tonight
WVU
NCSU
 
Final
PHI 91
CHA 109
Final
ORL 94
UTA 101
Final
CLE 95
BRK 91
Final
BOS 114
MIN 98
Final
DET 100
TOR 110
Final
MIA 103
WAS 105
Final
MEM 97
CHI 103
Final
SAN 119
POR 129
Final
DEN 109
LAC 106
4th
LAL 99
OKC 100
 
1:00pm Today
NYK
PHO
 
7:00pm Tonight
NOP
POR
 
7:00pm Tonight
CHA
UTA
 
8:00pm Tonight
HOU
ATL
 
8:30pm Tonight
DAL
SAN
 
9:00pm Tonight
DEN
IND
 
10:30pm Tonight
LAC
MIL
 
11:00am Today
LALAF
NEV
2:20pm Today
UTEP
UTST
3:30pm Today
COLST
UTAH
5:45pm Tonight
AFA
WMICH
9:15pm Tonight
BGU
SALABAMA
Final
YOUNG 92
WILB 71
 
Final
TULA 56
JST 49
 
Final
RAD 76
SIENA 66
 
Final
BUCK 88
CASEWEST 65
 
Final
LIB 94
CPNC 65
 
Final
SCAR 68
CLEM 45
Final
CMICH 97
CONC 60
 
Final
MIAMI 44
EKENT 72
Final
GWEBB 91
HIWASSEE 71
 
Final
ODU 60
MDES 43
 
Final
BUF 88
NIAG 62
 
Final
KSU 71
NCAT 57
 
Final
FAM 65
UNF 83
 
Final
NORST 81
NARZ 62
 
Final
DART 58
NILL 55
 
Final
MORE 60
NKENTUCKY 83
 
Final
UCSB 69
SDCHR 46
 
Final
STJ 53
GAELS 47
Final
ALA 69
STILL 49
 
Final
HAMP 66
TENST 54
 
Final
TENN 61
TENT 58
Final
WMARY 86
WSHMD 46
 
Final
MERC 67
COOK 46
 
Final
FLGC 83
FUR 78
 
Final
CALST 49
SDKST 53
 
Final
MTST 68
CHAT 58
Final
NDAK 78
DICKINSON 48
 
Final
LAMON 76
LSUALEX 71
 
Final
PRIN 77
LIP 55
 
Final
LAM 80
MLGN 53
 
Final
MINN 92
SEAT 57
 
Final
LOYC 73
SUTAH 57
 
Final
SELA 81
WINT 71
 
Final
SILL 52
NO 56
 
Final
MARQ 83
ALAAM 49
 
Final
TTU 72
ARKPB 51
 
Final
DEN 84
COLST 85
Final
CREI 75
TXPA 60
 
Final
CAL 78
EWASH 67
Final
UTST 69
IDST 56
 
2nd
UTEP 41
ARZ 46
 
Half
CHAM 32
HAW 55
 
12:00pm Today
GEOR
CHAR
 
12:00pm Today
WKENT
LOU
 
12:00pm Today
MICH
SMU
 
12:00pm Today
CIN
VCU
 
1:00pm Today
BSU
ABCHRIST
 
1:00pm Today
PROV
UMASS
 
1:00pm Today
AMER
MNTER
 
1:00pm Today
UNC
OSU
 
1:00pm Today
IUPUI
SALA
 
1:00pm Today
VILL
SYR
 
1:00pm Today
VT
CITA
 
1:00pm Today
DUQ
MLOWELL
 
1:30pm Today
FAIR
BEL
 
2:00pm Today
YALE
GTDNS
 
2:00pm Today
FD
DEL
 
2:00pm Today
PSU
DREX
 
2:00pm Today
UNCG
ELON
 
2:00pm Today
ILL
MIZZ
 
2:00pm Today
CAMP
MONT
 
2:00pm Today
LONG
PSUBEAVER
 
2:00pm Today
HOU
SCST
 
2:00pm Today
FSU
SFLA
 
2:00pm Today
BING
BONA
 
2:00pm Today
RUTG
RFLSH
 
2:00pm Today
MCNST
TOL
 
2:00pm Today
JVU
TRUETT
 
2:00pm Today
GT
VANDY
 
2:05pm Today
INDST
EILL
 
2:30pm Today
BUT
IND
 
3:00pm Today
STEPH
ARTCH
 
3:00pm Today
OREG
DELST
 
3:00pm Today
Terriers
FATL
 
3:00pm Today
TXARL
HPYN
 
3:00pm Today
KU
LAF
 
3:00pm Today
ARKST
MARS
 
3:00pm Today
MEM
ORU
 
3:00pm Today
KNST
UMBC
 
3:00pm Today
NW
WMICH
 
3:05pm Today
MIZST
EMICH
 
3:05pm Today
CHIST
STJOE
 
3:30pm Today
KENT
UCLA
 
4:00pm Today
COC
DAVID
 
4:00pm Today
RIU
DET
 
4:00pm Today
UCR
HOUB
 
4:00pm Today
MURST
ILLST
 
4:00pm Today
NWST
LALAF
 
4:00pm Today
WAGN
MON
 
4:00pm Today
MVSU
NCCU
 
4:00pm Today
PITT
OU
 
4:00pm Today
TENNM
PBY
 
4:00pm Today
WYO
SOUTH
 
4:00pm Today
AFA
UCD
 
4:00pm Today
MSST
USCU
 
5:00pm Tonight
JMU
HIGH
 
5:00pm Tonight
TXST
HTILL
 
5:00pm Tonight
DRAK
ISU
 
5:00pm Tonight
SHU
UNH
 
5:00pm Tonight
SCU
NE
 
5:00pm Tonight
MSU
TXSOU
 
5:00pm Tonight
UF
WAKE
 
5:15pm Tonight
ND
PURD
 
5:30pm Tonight
SHSU
PVU
 
6:00pm Tonight
AUB
XAV
 
7:00pm Tonight
AKR
BLUFFTON
 
7:00pm Tonight
DAY
BU
 
7:00pm Tonight
UNCW
ECU
 
7:00pm Tonight
CLMB
HOF
 
7:00pm Tonight
GMAS
IONA
 
7:00pm Tonight
TOWS
LAS
 
7:00pm Tonight
MAN
MRGST
 
7:00pm Tonight
CCST
YALE
 
7:00pm Tonight
PEPP
RICH
 
7:00pm Tonight
MAR
STJOE
 
7:00pm Tonight
KYST
TEXAM
 
7:00pm Tonight
MAST
VALPO
 
7:05pm Tonight
UMKC
INCWORD
 
7:30pm Tonight
IDST
CALST
 
7:30pm Tonight
NIOWA
IOWA
 
7:30pm Tonight
SIUE
UWMIL
 
8:00pm Tonight
TEX
LBSU
 
8:00pm Tonight
TCU
TXSA
 
8:30pm Tonight
ARK
SEMIZ
 
9:00pm Tonight
NCOL
JVST
 
9:00pm Tonight
ARST
LEH
 
9:00pm Tonight
NMST
NMU
 
9:00pm Tonight
WASH
OKLA
 
9:00pm Tonight
GRCN
STED
 
9:00pm Tonight
WEBER
WLVRN
 
9:30pm Tonight
WVU
NCSU
 
10:00pm Tonight
SDST
BST
 
10:00pm Tonight
GONZ
CPSL
 
10:00pm Tonight
PAC
FRES
 
10:00pm Tonight
PORT
MNTST
 
10:00pm Tonight
CSNO
TAMCC
 
10:05pm Tonight
UTST
SDKST
 
11:00pm Tonight
BYU
STAN
 
11:30pm Tonight
UNLV
UTAH
 
Final
NJD 3
TAM 2
Final
OTT 6
ANA 2
Final
DET 1
NYI 2
Final
WIN 2
BOS 1
Final
CAL 1
DAL 2
4:00pm Today
LOS
ARI
 
7:00pm Tonight
CLB
CHI
 
7:00pm Tonight
BUF
COL
 
7:00pm Tonight
PIT
FLA
 
7:00pm Tonight
CAR
NYR
 
7:00pm Tonight
MON
OTT
 
7:00pm Tonight
TOR
PHI
 
7:00pm Tonight
NYI
TAM
 
7:00pm Tonight
NJD
WAS
 
8:00pm Tonight
MIN
NAS
 
10:00pm Tonight
VAN
CAL
 
10:30pm Tonight
SJS
STL
 
4:30pm Today
WAS
PHI
8:25pm Tonight
SFX
SDC