Jon Lester's dominant World Series
Labeled one of the culprits of the “chicken and beer” fiasco that defined the 2011 collapse and hung over the Red Sox during their painful 69-win 2012 season, Jon Lester regained his form in 2013, going 15-8 with a 3.75 ERA. But it was in the postseason that Lester’s resurgence truly came to fruition, as he won two of his three starts in the ALDS and ALCS with a 2.33 ERA. In the World Series, Lester got the ball for Game 1 against St. Louis ace Adam Wainwright and just dominated the Cardinals, going 7.2 innings and allowing no runs on just five hits and one walk with eight strikeouts, in a game the Red Sox won, 8-1.
After falling behind in the series and then tying it up heading into Game 5, the Red Sox knew how pivotal this game would be. Lester faced off with Wainwright again and got more of the same results, pitching 7.2 innings again and allowing just one run, a solo home run by Matt Holliday, on just four hits and no walks while striking out seven. Lester finished the postseason with a 2.11 ERA in five starts, allowing six runs in 34.2 innings. With his two wins against the Cardinals, Lester also joined Babe Ruth as the only Red Sox lefthanders to win three World Series games (his first win was in Game 4 of the 2007 World Series).