By Mike Harrington
ST. LOUIS -- It's all systems go for David Ortiz to play first base Saturday night in Game Three of the World Series. The Boston designated hitter took ground balls Friday night in Busch Stadium and, with no DH in the National League park, will put his glove on to stay in the lineup.
"Whatever they need me for," Ortiz said as he was swarmed by reporters in the dugout. "We'll see how the situation goes, see
how it feels and go from there."
Manager John Farrell would not commit to Ortiz past Game Three and said hot-hitting Mike Napoli will start Saturday on the bench
"We haven't had to use it as much with the number of days off and strictly American League rules," Farrell said of his reserves. "But even if we have to defend for David late with Mike Napoli, we've got much more flexibility, obviously, with an added guy on the bench."
Be sure to read more about Ortiz and the lineup changes forced upon the Red Sox by the lack of a DH in Saturday's paper.
And be sure to pick up Sunday's editions for plenty more from the Series:
---In addition to the actual coverage of Game Three, my Inside Baseball column will feature a chat with Red Sox bench coach and Buffalo Baseball Hall of Famer Torey Lovullo. The baseball lifer is relishing his first trip to the Fall Classic and said it really hit home when he was on the Fenway Park foul line during introductions before Game One Wednesday night.
"It's fairly surreal and you can't describe it until you're out there," Lovullo told me today as we chatted in the tunnel leading to the Red Sox clubhouse. "The [military] planes fly over and you understand exactly what's happening. It's the end of the season, the last two teams standing. This is what you dream about when you're 12 years old and you're sitting in your bedroom thinking about the World Series. It's a pretty special moment I've waited a long time for."
---I'll also have a look back with several members of the Cardinals who started their professional careers in Class A ball with the Batavia Muckdogs of the New York-Penn League. The preferred methods of transportation to Dwyer Stadium for some of them? Bikes provided by Batavia residents who annually house the players for the summer.
Torey Lovullo. The Muckdogs of the Cardinals. And Game Three of the World Series. Only in Sunday's Buffalo News.