Hiroki Kuroda (0-0, -.--) vs. Clifton Phifer Lee (0-0, -.--).
The Dodgers and 'Steaks take their competition for the ultimate prize to the cold, wet confines of Citizens Bank Park (while that other L.A. team is gladly trading freezing rain for sunshine after going down 2-0 to the Yankees).
Plan A for the Dodgers: Beat Cliff Lee, who was 14-13 with a 3.22 ERA during the regular season. Hmmm, Plan A might not be so easy. Plan B: Get into Philly's bullpen. After all, it worked in Game 2 (and almost in Game 1). But how many pitches will it take to knock out Lee?
Quite a few, as it turns out. In 24 of Lee's 34 starts this season, he threw over 100 pitches. Three times he threw 122 pitches, and once he threw 124. So will the Dodgers swing early or try to go deep into counts? Will they have a Plan C?
Kuroda hasn't pitched in a real game in nearly three weeks, but Joe Torre made a wise choice for the Dodgers' toughest start of the season. Kuroda combines the experience of a veteran with the toughness of, well, someone who took a nasty line drive to the head and came back stronger than before. It doesn't hurt that Kuroda was actually more effective on the road this season, going 6-3 in away games and 2-4 at Dodger Stadium.
So grab that poncho and melt that Cheez Whiz — we're going to be in Philadelphia for a few days.
cheesesteak photo from Roadfood.com; other photos by Rob Carr/AP