Trainspotter 0 Posted October 29, 2007 Share #1 Posted October 29, 2007 Red Sox sweep Rockies for 2nd title in 4 seasons BY ANTHONY McCARRON DAILY NEWS SPORTS WRITER Monday, October 29th 2007, 4:00 AM [float=right] The Red Sox celebrate their second World Series title in four years with a sweep of the Rockies. [/float]DENVER - For so long, New England fans waited for the Curse of the Bambino to wither, wondering if they'd live to see their beloved Red Sox overcome generations of heartbreaking failure to win the World Series. Red Sox Nation once waited 86 years between championships. Now, after their second title in four seasons, the Red Sox are the closest thing that baseball has to a dynasty and decades of Beantown angst are nothing more than bad memories. The Red Sox completed a four-game sweep of the Rockies last night, downing Colorado, 4-3, in Game 4 in front of 50,041 at Coors Field. Boston has seven World Series championships, fourth behind the Yankees (26), Cardinals (10) and A's . Jon Lester, stricken with cancer last year but healthy enough to make 11 starts this season, threw 5-2/3 scoreless innings and Mike Lowell - named the series MVP - and pinch-hitter Bobby Kielty hit solo homers as the Red Sox withstood a rare failure by their setup relievers. [float=right] The Rockies, who made history with their magical run, can only look on. [/float]Brad Hawpe, who was demoted from sixth to seventh in the lineup because he had struck out in eight of his 13 Series at-bats, cracked a homer off Manny Delcarmen in the seventh to cut Boston's lead to 3-1. After Kielty's pinch-homer in the eighth gave the Red Sox a three-run cushion again, Garrett Atkins swatted a two-run shot off Hideki Okajima - the second straight night Okajima has given up a homer. Jonathan Papelbon got the final five outs, giving him 10-2/3 scoreless innings this postseason and saves in three of the four Sox Series victories. The Sox, who entered last night's game batting .352 in the Series, scored 29 runs in the four games, the third-highest total for a four-game Fall Classic, eight fewer than the 1932 Yankees, who swept the Cubs and scored 37 runs. Last night was Boston's eighth consecutive victory in a Series game and made manager Terry Francona 8-0. David Ortiz singled in Jacoby Ellsbury, who had led off the game with his fourth double in five at-bats, dating back to Game 3, to give Boston a 1-0 lead in the first. Jason Varitek singled in Lowell in the fifth to stake the Sox to a 2-0 advantage. [float=right] Jonathan Papelbon and Jason Varitek embrace and celebrate the Red Sox victory. [/float]The game pitted two pitchers who had rebounded from life-threatening medical conditions, a feel-good sidebar to the sweep. And both pitched well, too, despite not taking regular rotation turns recently. Lester rebounded from lymphoma after undergoing chemotherapy last offseason. His only playoff appearances had come twice in relief in the ALCS. He got the start last night because injured Tim Wakefield was left off the Series roster by the Sox. When Terry Francona came out to remove Lester after a two-out walk to Garrett Atkins in the sixth, Sox infielders crowded around the pitcher and slapped his back in acknowledgment of his performance. When Lester walked off the mound, he slapped his left hand into his glove in frustration for walking Atkins. But Delcarmen came in from the bullpen and struck out Ryan Spilborghs, the third Rockies center fielder in the four games of the Series. Colorado righty Aaron Cook has jagged scars at the base of his neck and on his chest from operations to treat a condition that caused blood clots in his lungs in 2004. Doctors removed a rib that was pressing on a vein and causing the clots, which were discovered when he had trouble breathing during a start, a problem that had nothing to do with Denver's thin air. Cook was the Rockies' Opening Day starter, but he hadn't pitched since Aug. 10, the day he hurt an oblique muscle. It was the longest layoff before a World Series start since Bob Grim of the 1955 Yankees, who started Game 5 that year but hadn't made a start in 112 days. Cook was not on the roster for either of the first two rounds of the playoffs because manager Clint Hurdle wasn't convinced he'd be sharp. Cook delivered what was probably the finest start by a Rockies' pitcher in the Series, going six-plus innings and allowed three runs and six hits. He was taken out after Lowell's homer leading off the seventh. Boston scored in the first inning. Ellsbury, who had three doubles in a 4-for-5 night in Game 3, hit Cook's second pitch down the left-field line for yet another double. He moved over on a groundout and came home when Ortiz singled into right field. But Cook got Manny Ramirez to hit into a double play and then retired the next nine hitters, too, until Lowell led off the fifth with a double to left-center. One out later, Varitek singled to right and Lowell beat Hawpe's throw home, diving headfirst for the plate to avoid Yorvit Torrealba's tag. The Rockies, meanwhile, had several good chances against Lester but he squashed any attempted rallies. Todd Helton, the Rox's cleanup hitter, led off the second with a double, but had to stand at second while Lester got two outs. After Hawpe walked, Lester retired Torrealba on a grounder. Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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