The St. Louis Cardinals were unable to take both games at home to start the 2011 World Series against the Texas Rangers, making Game 3 on Saturday night a must-win for the Cardinals on the road.

Since the series will switch to an American League park, the designated hitter is play, which gives the already dangerous Rangers lineup another quality bat to use.

After losing the first game by just one run, the Rangers survived Game 2 by the score of 2-1, and took home-field advantage with them to Texas.

The Cardinals have to win Game 3 because falling behind 2-1 with two more games to play in Texas would be tough to come back from, especially since the Cardinals have just one ace who can dominate a game in Chris Carpenter.

The scary thing for the Cardinals is the Rangers offense has yet to awaken, and playing in their hitter-friendly home ballpark might be exactly what they need to get their struggling bats fired up.

The Cardinals can win a close game, but it’s unlikely they can survive a slug-fest for three games in Arlington.

For the 14th time in 107 World Series, the first two games were decided by just one run. It’s also the fourth time in the last 32 years that this feat has happened.

History shows us that most of time when a World Series begins with two really close games, the series will likely go six or seven games total.

However, the Cardinals don’t have the firepower or the dominant pitching to survive any six- to 10-run games. They have done it a few times in these playoffs, but it’s unlikely they can contain a very talented lineup like Texas top to bottom to just a few runs per game much longer.

The Rangers’ bats are going to break out at some point, so the Cardinals need to win Game 3 to put the pressure on Texas and put some fear and panic into their minds.

One of the best ways to get a good lineup off of its game is to have them pressing and trying to hit a home run every at bat because they are down in the series and feel like they need to make up ground in one swing.

The Cardinals can really put the Rangers in a tough position tonight with a win, and in the process, give themselves lots of confidence to wrap things up in Texas or possibly go back to St. Louis up 3-2, with two shots to win the title at home.


Nicholas Goss is a Featured Columnist at Bleacher Report. Follow him on Twitter for the latest sports news and updates.  

Read more MLB news on