Red Sox grab big first-inning lead in Game 1

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The 2013 World Series is off to a pretty horrendous start for the National League-champion Cardinals.

Adam Wainwright walked Jacoby Ellsbury to open the bottom of the first inning and then gave up a one-out single to Dustin Pedroia. David Ortiz then hit a groundball to Cardinals second baseman Matt Carpenter that should have been turned into an inning-ending doubleplay. But Carpenter made a soft, off-the-mark flip to shortstop Pete Kozma and the ball was dropped. Second base umpire Dana DeMuth originally called Pedroia out, claiming that Kozma dropped the ball on the transfer, but the entire six-man umpiring crew got together and made things right.

A moment later Mike Napoli — who terrorized the Cardinals in the 2011 World Series as a member of the Texas Rangers — slugged a bases-clearing, three-run double into the left-field gap.

Wainwright threw 31 pitches in the first inning. Red Sox starter Jon Lester threw just 12.

Boston has a 3-0 lead as Game 1 of the World Series moves to the top of the second.

Report: Nathan Eovaldi drawing interest from at least nine teams

Nathan Eovaldi
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Former Red Sox right-hander Nathan Eovaldi is up for grabs this offseason, and Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe says that as many as nine suitors are interested in bringing the righty aboard. While the Red Sox are eager to retain Eovaldi’s services after his lights-out performance during their recent postseason run, they’ll have to contend with the Brewers, Phillies, Braves, White Sox, Padres, Blue Jays, Giants, and Angels — all of whom are reportedly positioned to offer something for the starter this winter.

It wasn’t all smooth sailing for the 28-year-old in 2018, however. After losing his 2017 season to Tommy John surgery, he underwent an additional procedure to remove loose bodies from his right elbow in March and didn’t make his first appearance until the end of May. He was flipped for lefty reliever Jalen Beeks just prior to the trade deadline and finished his season with a combined 6-7 record in 21 starts, a 3.81 ERA, 1.6 BB/9, and 8.2 SO/9 through 111 innings.

Despite his numerous health issues over the last few years, Eovaldi raised his stock in October after becoming a major contributor during the Red Sox’ championship run. He contributed two quality starts in the ALDS and ALCS and returned in Games 1-3 of the World Series with three lights-out performances in relief — including a six-inning effort in the 18-inning marathon that was Game 3.

A frontrunner has yet to emerge for the righty this offseason, but Cafardo points out that the nine teams listed so far might just be the tip of the iceberg. Still, he won’t be the most sought-after starter on the market, as former Diamondbacks southpaw Patrick Corbin is expected to command an even bigger payday following his career-best 6.0-fWAR performance in 2018.