10/26/2004 11:36 PM ET
Game balls: Rating Game 3
Red Sox move within one win of breaking Curse
By Anthony Castrovince / MLB.com
| World Series: News | Video | Audio | Photos
Ramirez throws out Walker at home: 56K | 350K
Bill Mueller's RBI single: 56K | 350K
Pedro Martinez strikes out six: 56K | 350K
Manny Ramirez homers: 56K | 350K
MLB.com is awarding "game balls" or, in this case, Wally the Green Monster to represent the Red Sox, and arches that represent the Gateway to the West in St. Louis. Let's see who earned the extra credits in Boston's 4-1 victory on Tuesday night at Busch Stadium.
Five Wallys: Wave the Red Sox flag high and mighty
Four Wallys: Makes Red Sox Nation feel good
Three Wallys: The fur could use a little fluffing
Two Wallys: Might be time to dry-clean the outfit
One Wally: You're stuck rallying the faithful in northern Maine
Pedro Martinez: In Martinez's first career World Series start, the Cardinals were cooperative enough to help him out with some early baserunning trouble. Then Pedro took over, retiring the last 14 batters he faced. In all, he pitched seven shutout innings, allowing just three hits. If this was indeed his last start as a member of the Red Sox, it was an absolute gem.
Manny Ramirez: His solo home run in the first put the Sox ahead early, while Ramirez's RBI single in the fifth made it a 2-0 game. In the field, Ramirez had an outfield assist to nail Larry Walker at home in the first inning. Routine play? For most, yeah. But not for Ramirez. For him, it was a big highlight in a solid evening.
Boston defense: No errors? What do you think this is, a World Series game? Thanks to a spotless night in St. Louis -- with David Ortiz playing first, no less -- the Sox brought their average errors per game in this Series down to ... drum roll, please ... 2.67. Hey, it's no defensive clinic, but the Sox will take it, especially considering they're up, 3-0.
Bill Mueller: He went 2-for-4 with a run and an RBI. Not a bad homecoming for Mueller, a graduate of DeSmet Jesuit High School in suburban Creve Coeur.
David Ortiz: He stranded four runners at the plate, but at least give him some credit for playing adequately at first base. Many people were expecting a lot worse from the DH.
Five arches: On top of the world
The Curse of the Bambino: Has yet to present itself in this Series.
Four arches: Clear view down-river
Three arches: Walker underneath
Two arches: Saw it in the guidebook
One arch: I thought you said St. Paul
Larry Walker: He got caught trying to tag up and score on a fly ball to Ramirez in the first inning, setting the tone for what would be a rough night for the Cardinals. But Walker made the game a little more interesting, albeit briefly, with a solo home run off Keith Foulke with one out in the ninth.
Jeff Suppan: Became the third Cardinals starter unable to go five innings in this Series against the potent Boston lineup. Suppan gave up four runs on eight hits in 4 2/3 innings. What's more, Suppan made a costly baserunning blunder in the third inning, blowing one of the Cards' only chances at scoring an early run. Hey, at least he got a hit off Pedro, though.
Scott Rolen: Somebody wake up Rolen and let him know the World Series has begun. He is 0-for-11 at the plate, one of many reasons the Cards are on the verge of being swept.
Anthony Castrovince is a contributing writer for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.