Tough act to follow for Cardinals-Rangers

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Ray Knight celebrates after scoring the game-winning run in Game 6 of the 1986 World Series. Knight also hit a game-winning home run in Game 7 to help give the Mets their second World Series title.

The St. Louis Cardinals staged an epic comeback win against the Texas Rangers in Game 6 of the 2011 World Series on Thursday. The Rangers blew five different leads in the game, including two-run leads in both the ninth and 10th inning. The Elias Sports Bureau tells us the Cardinals are the first team to come back from deficits in the ninth inning and extra innings to win a World Series game.

When you get an epic Game 6 of a World Series, the good news is that Game 7 usually turns out to be a pretty good one. Here are a few examples of situations in which an epic Game 6 forced a Game 7.


The Boston Red Sox, who rallied from three runs down in the eighth to win in 12 innings on a home run by Carlton Fisk, had a 3-0 lead in Game 7 against the Cincinnati Reds, but couldn’t hold it. The Reds tied the game and then won it, 4-3, on Joe Morgan’s hit in the ninth inning.


The Kansas City Royals, who rallied to win Game 6 on Dane Iorg’s two-run hit in the ninth inning (with help from first base ump Don Denkinger), blew the Cardinals out, 11-0 in Game 7. Bret Saberhagen pitched a shutout to give the Royals their first World Series title.


The Red Sox, who blew a 5-3 lead with two outs in the 10th inning of Game 6, built a 3-0 lead in Game 7 of the World Series. But the New York Mets rallied to tie with three runs in the sixth, then went ahead for good on Ray Knight’s seventh-inning home run. The Mets won 8-5, giving them their second World Series title, and extending the Red Sox World Series drought to 68 years.


After the Minnesota Twins beat the Atlanta Braves on Kirby Puckett’s 11th-inning walk-off home run in Game 6, the teams played one of the best Game 7s in the history of the sport. They battled through 9 1/2 scoreless innings in Game 7 (Jack Morris pitched all 10 innings for Minnesota) before the Twins won in the 10th on Gene Larkin’s walk-off hit.


After the Los Angeles Angels rallied from 5-0 down in the 7th inning to beat the San Francisco Giants in Game 6 (6-5), they beat the Giants 4-1 in Game 7. The big hit came off the bat of Garret Anderson, who hit a three-run double in the third inning.