A phrase that's used often in baseball when discussing a seven game set is saying the third game can often propel a team to gaining momentum and an edge in the series. I don't think this applies to every team or every series but for the Red Sox-Rays, I think winning this game could go a long way toward heading to the World Series.
The Sox have their ace in John Lester on the mound (wow, it still sounds weird not referring to Beckett as that) and the Rays will send Matt Garza out to try to steal one on the road. This is the type of game the Sox have won with regularity during the past few years and I fully expect them to come out and play well. Remember what I said before...if Garza doesn't have it early he could let his emotions get the best of him. In October, these are things that you need to keep an eye on.
After this game, the Wakefield-Sonnanstine match up is a game I'm not sure I'd be confident in if I were either the Rays or Sox.
The Sox have had great success with two-out RBI and the struggles of Jacoby Ellsbury and David Ortiz haven't been a huge problem but as the series goes on they're going to need to contribute. Dan Shaughnessy made a good point in today's Globe. Ortiz should start bunting to keep the defense honest. A few hits could get him going.