So it comes down to this.
For the first time since 2002, when the Angels beat the Giants, the World Series won't be decided until Game 7, thanks to a Game 6 that featured more twists and turns and false endings than the last three seasons of Lost.
Fortunately for the Rangers, there's usually no such thing as momentum in baseball. If there was, of course, they would have won Game 6 and everyone would already be planning the Metroplex's biggest parade since ExxonMobil's last quarterly earnings were published.
But once they lost Game 6, the mootness of momentum became a positive. Because regardless of the horrors they experienced Thursday night, once Friday night rolls around they'll be on roughly even footing with the Cardinals, both athletically and emotionally.
That's the smart money, anyway. The real question is who's better: Matt Harrison working after five days of rest, or Chris Carpenter on three. It won't necessarily come down to that, but in the Land of What-Ifs that's the smart money, too.
Start time: Friday, 8:05 p.m. (Eastern)
TV coverage: FOX
Projected starters and their postseason stats:
Cardinals: Chris Carpenter (3-0, 3.30 ERA)
Rangers: Matt Harrison (1-1, 5.02)