Wong’s Home Run Lifts St. Louis to 2-1 NLDS Lead
Hilo’s Kolten Wong can forget about last October’s base running blunder in the World Series.
Wong’s two-run home run off of Los Angeles Dodgers pitcher Scott Elbert in the bottom of the seventh inning was the difference in Monday’s 3-1 home victory in Game Three of the National League Divisiom Series.
The win gave the Cardinals a 2-1 series lead and a chance to win the series with a win on Tuesday.
With the game tied at 1-1, St. Louis catcher Yadier Molina started the bottom of the seventh inning with a single to left field. After John Jay sacrificed him over, Wong wasted little time in finding an Elbert pitch he liked. He drilled a first-pitch slider over the right-center field fence and into the bullpen for his first career postseason home run.
Prior to Monday’s heroics, Wong was known for a dramatic October play that was far less memorable for the Kamehameha-Hawai’i graduate. In Game Four of last year’s World Series against the Boston Red Sox, Wong was picked off of first base by Red Sox closer Koji Uehara to end the game.
It’s a redeeming moment for the 23-year-old slugger, four days before his 24th birthday.
“Unbelievable. That’s the beauty of baseball and things can turn around in an instant,” Wong told Ken Rosenthal on Fox Sports 1’s telecast of the game. “I go from last year, and I knew that I wanted to prove that that wasn’t me. I knew that I made a mistake, and I didn’t want it to happen again, so I definitely came in here prepared, ready to play second base and try to do something.”
Wong’s heroics got the attention of another Hawai’i major league, Shane Victorino, who tweeted out praise moments after the at-bat.
ARTICLE CONTINUES BELOW AD
— Shane Victorino (@ShaneVictorino) October 7, 2014
Wong batted 1-for-4 in the game. He is batting 2-for-8 (.250) in the series with a strikeout.
Game four of the series will be played Tuesday morning at 11 a.m. Hawai’i time. It can be heard on ESPN Radio AM 850 Hilo and AM 790 Kona with coverage beginning at 10:30 a.m. The broadcast will be followed by the fourth game of the NLDS series between Washington and San Francisco.
The Dodgers – Cardinals game can also be seen on Fox Sports 1.