Red Sox

Roche: David Ortiz’s Unique Team-Building Parties, John Lackey’s Chances Of Starting Game 2 And Other Pre-World Series Thoughts

By Dan Roche, WBZ-TV Sports
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David Ortiz (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

David Ortiz (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

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BOSTON (CBS) — Some quick thoughts as we get ready for Game 1 of the World Series on Wednesday night:

–One of the keys to the Red Sox’ last two World Series wins was the work done by Boston’s advance scouts. I remember Jason Varitek telling me how prepared both he and the pitching staff felt due to the scouting reports done on the Cards and Rockies. Varitek has been one of the Sox personnel doing the advance work on the Cards. It will be interesting to see how the Sox pitch the Cardinals’ very good lineup.

–Yadier Molina is the best catcher in the game. He will get a lot of MVP votes this year and is one of the “have to watch” players in the game. He’s that good. The Sox base stealers are 11-for-13 in the postseason so far. Molina throws out 43 percent of those attempting, which is the best in baseball. Let the cat-and-mouse games begin.

–Usually it’s a disadvantage for NL teams to come into AL ballparks in a World Series because they lack a true DH. Not so for the Cards, who may have Allen Craig to fill that spot. He’s been out the past seven weeks with a foot injury, so he may be rusty, but this is a guy who drove in 97 runs in the regular season. And, if Craig is a no-go, John Jay may get the nod. Good hitters.

–Just a gut feeling, but I think John Lackey will go in Game 2. Lackey and Jon Lester both threw in the bullpen Monday, and Clay Buchholz threw 85 pitches in Game 6 of the ALCS on Saturday. Lackey hasn’t pitched since Game 3 in Detroit and I’m sure Clay could use the rest.

–After watching the first two rounds of the playoffs, because each and every pitch matters so much, to me, 80 pitches in the playoffs is the equivalent to at least 100 pitches in the regular season. So, keep that in mind as to when pitchers are pulled in the postseason.

–I love the fact that David Ortiz has twice opened his home to his teammates and their friends and families for parties during the playoffs. The team got together Sunday afternoon for several hours. It was fully catered and even had bouncy houses for the kids to play on. In fact, one veteran player said that his wife was amazed at how great it was. In fact, Ortiz gave a 45-minute tour to their family of the house. I’ve never heard of something like that happening, with every player and coach invited.

–The national anthem and “Shipping Up To Boston” performance by the Dropkick Murphys was one of the best I’ve ever heard at a sporting event.

–I want Pedro/Schill/Wake/Bronson/D-Lowe to throw out the first pitch to Tek and Doug Mirabelli for Game 1.

Enjoy the hype.

Follow WBZ-TV’s Dan Roche on Twitter @RochieWBZ.

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