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Uehara, Napoli Lift Red Sox to World Series

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Uehara, Napoli Lift Red Sox to World Series

Getty Images

DETROIT, MI - OCTOBER 17: Koji Uehara #19 and Mike Napoli #12 of the Boston Red Sox celebrate their 4 to 3 win over the Detroit Tigers during Game Five of the American League Championship Series at Comerica Park on October 17, 2013 in Detroit, Michigan. (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)

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It's hard to fault the Texas Rangers for letting Koji Uehara walk away following the 2012 season. It's a little easier to fault them for letting Mike Napoli walk.

Whatever your feelings on the two former Rangers, they've both played a huge part in getting the Boston Red Sox back to the World Series this year, which begins Wednesday night against the St. Louis Cardinals, which will give both of them some extra fuel to avenge their loss to the Cardinals in the 2011 World Series when they were with the Rangers.

Uehara was named the ALCS MVP after working six innings in the series with a win and three saves as he allowed no runs on just four hits with nine strikeouts and no walks. He came into the game in several high-leverage situations and picked up multiple four-out saves.

Napoli wasn't quite 2011 World Series Napoli, but he was pretty darn huge for the Red Sox at the plate.

After hitting just .154 in the Red Sox's ALDS win over Tampa Bay, Napoli hit .300 with a .700 slugging percentage against the Tigers with two doubles and two home runs.

Those two alone are plenty of reason to hope for a Red Sox win in the World Series, especially considering the opponent.

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