Cardinals starter Shelby Miller and Red Sox starter Joe Kelly have been best friends since their time in the minor leagues. The two spent most of their time together when Kelly pitched for the Cardinals and were even best men in each others weddings. After being dealt to Boston almost a week ago, Kelly became a Cardinal foe on Wednesday night as he faced off against his best friend.
Both the Cardinals and Red Sox have been struggling offensively coming into their three game series, and the battle of the best men would keep those struggles going. Both Miller and Kelly went seven innings, allowing one run on less than one-hundred pitches. Kelly never allowed a hit after the second and worked around four walks. With productive and sometimes dominant performances, Wednesday’s game would become a battle of the bullpens.
The eight innings from St. Louis and Boston would bring more of the same, but in the ninth, Trevor Rosenthal loaded the bases without recording an out. After a Xander Bogaerts sac fly, Rosenthal escaped the inning by recording a groundout to third and a flyout to center.
Matt Adams lead off the bottom of the ninth with a single and was lifted for pinch runner Peter Bourjos. Bourjos was given the green light undoubtedly, however, never made a steal attempt before Johnny Peralta grounded into a fielders choice that almost became a double play. Rookie Oscar Taveras extended thew game with a single, but Jon Jay was unable to drive in the game tying run with Peralta on second.
Seeing Kelly dominate the stagnant Cardinals lineup may have stung just a bit, as letting the young arm go in a package deal for John Lackey has been called a questionable move by many. AJ Pierzynski added another hit against his former team, giving him four hits in eight at bats against the Red Sox. Allen Craig and Joe Kelly both received ovations from the Cardinal faithful, although Craig was unavailable for the game due to injury and has been put on the DL.
The Cardinals will look to take the rubber game tomorrow when Adam Wainwright (13-6) duels Brandon Workman (1-4). The Cardinals now sit a game back from the Brewers with a record of 60-52.