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World Series Lineups: Daniel Nava returns to Red Sox lineup for Game 3

Daniel Nava lives!

Robert Deutsch-USA TODAY

The Red Sox will have Daniel Nava batting fifth and back in left field as they try to bounce back from a disappointing Game 2 loss.

Boston Red Sox (1-1)

  1. Jacoby Ellsbury, CF
  2. Shane Victorino, RF
  3. Dustin Pedroia, 2B
  4. David Ortiz, AB
  5. Daniel Nava, LF
  6. Xander Bogaerts, 3B
  7. Jarrod Saltalamacchia, C
  8. Stephen Drew, SS
  9. Jake Peavy, SP

St. Louis Cardinals (1-1)

  1. Matt Carpenter, 2B
  2. Carlos Beltran, RF
  3. Matt Holliday, LF
  4. Matt Adams, 1B
  5. Yadier Molina, C
  6. David Freese, 3B
  7. Jon Jay, CF
  8. Pete Kozma, SS
  9. Joe Kelly, SP

It's about time. About time that one of the team's best hitters against righties isn't sidelined for vague concepts like intangibles and momentum, or because of an overemphasis on specific pitcher matchups without simply considering the larger picture: Nava is a better hitter than Gomes, and a much better hitter vs. RHP.

Now he's got the chance to show why he should have been there all along as he bats fifth in Game 3. Right behind him: Xander Bogaerts, the other man who had to wait perhaps too long for his turn.

To be fair, though, results tonight should not be compared to results against Michael Wacha. Joe Kelly has fantastic results, but mediocre peripherals, and so far the playoffs have seen him give up the runs you'd expect him to. It hasn't been a disaster by any means, and the Red Sox lineup is made noticeably weaker without the DH, but a low-strikeout guy who gives up some walks doesn't mix well with the patient Red Sox. Hopefully that ends as it might be expected to.

Even if it does, though, for the Red Sox to have any chance, Jake Peavy will have to put up a better fight than he did in his last outing. If he can't get back to what he was doing in the ALDS, it could be a long night.

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