Josh Beckett's oblique injury means he will pitch only once in the series. That puts the pressure squarely on the shoulders of Jon Lester, the AL pitcher of the month in September, and Daisuke Matsuzaka. Both are in line to pitch twice. This may not be a bad thing. Lester is a different pitcher than the one who has a 7.78 ERA in four career starts against the Angels, just as Angels ace John Lackey seemed to get over the hurdle of not being able to beat the Red Sox with a pair of solid regular-season starts, including a near no-hitter at Fenway. Lester (shown here throwing the final pitch of his May no-hitter against the Royals) is good at holding runners on, which could take the Angels out of their running game. He also makes switch-hitter Teixeira bat from the right side, where he has less power.
(Globe Staff Photo / Jim Davis)