ST. LOUIS (AP) — Koji Uehara emerged from the dugout, walked onto the field at Busch Stadium and gazed at the gleaming Gateway Arch.
The World Series scene shifted Friday. And far from the Green Monster and Fenway Park, the Boston closer and many of his Red Sox teammates were eager to look around.
"I've only been in St. Louis since I got off the bus, so I haven't got much to say," outfielder Daniel Nava said. "But I've heard a lot about it.
"I've heard the fans are amazing. I've heard the fans are truly knowledgeable. The stadium's unreal. It's beautiful. They've done a great job of just constructing it and making it fan friendly and hopefully player friendly."
From the Charles River to the mighty Mississippi, from clam chowder to toasted ravioli, St. Louis was now home with the Series tied at 1-all.
"We love Cardinal country," ace Adam Wainwright said.
For good reason, too. After a split in Boston, Dustin Pedroia and the rest of the Red Sox will get to see what makes this place so special.
Especially in October.
"Well, we love playing here at Busch Stadium. Like I said, it's a sea of red," pitcher Joe Kelly said.
The free-spirited Kelly was set to start Game 3 on Saturday night against Jake Peavy.
"This is what I've lived for my whole life — my whole baseball career, I should say," Peavy said. "I'm as prepared as I'll ever be — physically, mentally."
Also warmed up: A team of eight Clydesdales, ready to pull a red beer wagon around the warning track before the first pitch. It's also a tradition for fans to gather early at the Musial statue — there are two honoring Stan the Man outside the stadium, actually.
The Cardinals rely on a lot more than pomp when they play in their own park.
They led the NL in scoring while going 54-27 at Busch, and then let pitching take over in the postseason. St. Louis is 5-1 at home in the playoffs; in those five wins, opponents scored a total of five runs.
Boston has hit just .188 so far in the Series, with David Ortiz providing the biggest bop. He's homered in both games and is 4 for 6 overall with five RBIs.
With no designated hitter in the National League park, Ortiz will switch to first base. Manager John Farrell wouldn't say whether Ortiz would start there for every game in St. Louis, but it's a good guess regular first baseman Mike Napoli will be on the bench for a while.