ARLINGTON, Texas -- At the conclusion of the first inning on Sunday night, in which Rangers starter Derek Holland retired the Cardinals' side in order, including a strikeout of scorching hot Allen Craig and a groundout from history-making Albert Pujols, Texas reliever Mike Adams turned toward bullpen-mate Scott Feldman and offered a prediction.
"We might get 'Complete Game Derek' tonight," Adams said.
"We might get 'Shutout Derek,'" Feldman replied.
Neither was exactly right -- Holland threw 8 1/3 shutout innings before closer Neftali Feliz got the final two outs as the Rangers won 4-0 to even the World Series at two games apiece -- but the prevailing sentiment rang home.
Perhaps no group benefited more from Holland's brilliant outing than the Rangers' relief corps. It was the first time this postseason that a Texas starter had even completed seven innings, much less more than eight, and meant that the mostly-excellent but heavily-taxed bullpen would -- aside from Feliz, who threw 17 pitches and was coming off two days of rest -- be given a much-needed extra day off.
"Tonight we got a great start," Adams said. "It helped the bullpen tremendously. I think we'll be a little bit reloaded tomorrow and ready to go."
Read more: http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/2011/writers/joe_lemire/10/24/world.series.bullpens/index.html#ixzz1bj1PT7ZR