Red Sox give Rockies runaround yet again

Boston pounds out 10 runs, holds off rally

Game 3 Saturday night

October 29, 2007|By Dan Connolly | Dan Connolly,Sun Reporter

DENVER — Reprinted from yesterday's late editions.

DENVER -- For several minutes, for half an inning, there was legitimate, breath-holding, hat-hanging drama in a World Series that previously had looked like a Boston Red Sox highlight film.

Then the Red Sox did what they've done all year: Their hitters bashed the opposing reliever and their own bullpen held steady. And when the dust settled after four hours and 19 minutes on the first World Series game ever held in Denver, the Red Sox emerged with a 10-5 win over the Colorado Rockies on Saturday night and a commanding 3-0 lead.

Boston is the 23rd team in baseball history to go up 3-0 in the October Classic. And, memo to a giddy Red Sox Nation: The other 22 have ended up as world champions. In fact, 19 have swept the Series in four games.

Rockies manager Clint Hurdle wasn't ready to concede.

"It looks like we are in ground-breaking territory," he said. "We need to go out and win Game 4."

The Red Sox scored six runs in the third inning but were up just 6-5 in the eighth when Jacoby Ellsbury and Dustin Pedroia each doubled against Colorado setup man Brian Fuentes for a four-run cushion.

Daisuke Matsuzaka, the hyped Japanese import and reputed big-game pitcher, did enough on the mound to keep the struggling Rockies offense quiet for half the game. He also added an important two-run single in the Red Sox's sixth-run third.

But again he couldn't get through the sixth inning and Boston had to turn to its bullpen as the Rockies mounted a comeback that revved up their screaming fans. The big blow came in the seventh when National League Most Valuable Player candidate Matt Holliday smashed a 437-foot, three-run homer to center on the first pitch from reliever Hideki Okajima, who was Boston's hero in Game 2. It was Holliday's fifth playoff homer and the first postseason run allowed by Okajima.

Up by a run, "it looked like we were hanging on for dear life," Red Sox manager Terry Francona said. But the Rockies would get no closer.

dan.connolly@baltsun.com

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