- Associated Press - Thursday, October 27, 2011

Mike Adams retires Rafael Furcal with the bases loaded to end the eighth. Leading 7-5, the Texas Rangers are three outs from their first World Series championship.

It’s a mystery why manager Ron Washington didn’t go to closer Neftali Feliz in the eighth, but he’ll surely be on in the ninth to try to close it out.

St. Louis has the 2-3-4 hitters coming up: Ryan Theriot, Albert Pujols and Lance Berkman.

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Allen Craig homers off Derek Holland with one out in the eighth inning and St. Louis trims its deficit to 7-5.

That’s the first run the Cardinals have managed off Holland, who pitched a gem to win Game 4. The young lefty was just lifted for Adams, with pinch-hitter Gerald Laird coming up. Laird was replaced by pinch-hitter Daniel Descalso, who reached on an infield single when shortstop Elvis Andrus made an ill-advised throw to first rather than going to second for the force.

Jon Jay followed with a single that loaded the bases.

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Adrian Beltre and Nelson Cruz hit consecutive home runs off Lance Lynn to start the seventh, giving Texas the lead. Ian Kinsler added an RBI single to make it 7-4.

Cruz’s mammoth shot into the third deck in left field was his eighth homer of the postseason, tying the major league record held by Barry Bonds (2002) and Carlos Beltran (2004).

Holland stands to win in relief. He started and won Game 4 on Sunday, taking a two-hit shutout into the ninth inning for a 4-0 victory.

Holland scored on Kinsler’s single in the seventh.

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A footnote on Beltre’s shot: It was 25 years ago tonight that the New York Mets won the 1986 World Series. That night, in Game 7 against Boston, another third baseman (Ray Knight) hit a leadoff homer in the seventh inning to snap a tie.

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Story Continues →