- Associated Press - Thursday, October 24, 2013

BOSTON (AP) - A look at Game 2 of the World Series at Fenway Park on Thursday night as the St. Louis Cardinals take on the Boston Red Sox:

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BELTRAN BACK: Star outfielder Carlos Beltran felt good enough to start for the Cardinals, a day after he bruised his ribs while banging into the short bullpen wall to take away a grand slam from David Ortiz.

Beltran was batting second and back in right field. He singled in his first at-bat in front of a diving Jonny Gomes in left field.

Beltran waited his whole career to play in the World Series. He then struck out in the first inning Wednesday night, got hurt in the second and left in the third. Not quite the debut he hoped for.

He’s one of the best postseason players ever, and hoped to help the Cardinals bounce back from an embarrassing 8-1 loss in the opener.

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LOOKING AT LESTER: A day after a reversed call by umpires created commotion, there was another ruckus before Game 2. This one involved the glove of Red Sox ace Jon Lester, and developed into a did-he-or-didn’t he deal.

A Cardinals minor league pitcher named Tyler Melling posted a screen shot on Twitter that showed a green substance in Lester’s mitt. Melling added: “Jon Lester using a little Vaseline inside the glove tonight?”

Shades of allegations against Detroit pitcher Kenny Rogers in the 2006 Series, right?

Anyhow, Lester insisted before Game 2 that he only uses rosin _ that he got no extra help in pitching 7 2-3 shutout innings in the opener.

Major League Baseball looked into the matter and said it couldn’t draw any conclusions from the video it studied.

“There were no complaints from the Cardinals and the umpires never detected anything indicating a foreign substance throughout the game,” MLB said in a statement.

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MO-MENT: Mariano Rivera was honored _ again _ at Fenway Park _ again _ with the Commissioner’s Historic Achievement Award before Game 2 of the World Series.

Baseball’s career saves leader wore a suit and had his family with him on the field. Big Papi stood nearby clapping, and Rivera acknowledged the cheering crowd at Fenway.

Red Sox fans have been lauded several times for the class they’ve shown this year in saluting Rivera, who retired after the regular season. And that’s been warranted. Wonder, though, whether they would feel so warm and fuzzy about him if not for Boston’s big comeback in the 2004 AL championship series against Rivera and the rival New York Yankees.

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LINEUP CHANGE: Cardinals shortstop Pete Kozma’s two errors in Game 1 earned him a spot on the St. Louis bench. Manager Mike Matheny tweaked his lineup, pulling Kozma and putting Daniel Descalso in his place.

Kozma has made several nifty pickups in the postseason and has developed a reputation for getting key hits. He’s also been on the wrong end of some kooky plays.

There’s not much time to get things right in October. So while Kozma settles down, Descalso is in there, batting ninth.


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