Add another momentum-shifting RBI to Cody Ross' stellar postseason résumé.
A fourth inning single by the Giants right fielder opened up the scoring in Game 3 of the NLCS, giving Matt Cain (7 IP, 0 R) the only run support he would need in the Giants' 3-0 home victory.
San Francisco has found lightning in a bottle with Ross, who was only claimed off waivers by the Giants to block the Padres from acquiring him.
After only seeing time in September because of an injury to center fielder Andres Torres, Ross made the most of his opportunity at the plate, registering three homers and five RBI during the last two weeks of the regular season.
Once Torres returned, Ross still split right field duties with fellow midseason pickup Jose Guillen, who now walks around in street clothes since he was left off the Giants' playoff roster.
Finally a full-time starter, despite getting lifted for defensive specialist Nate Schierholtz in later innings, Ross has found his groove at the plate over the season's last month.
In his last four playoff games, the Giants right fielder is batting an even .500 (6-for-12) with four home runs and six RBI despite facing the likes of Roy Halladay, Roy Oswalt and Cole Hamels (not to mention veteran Derek Lowe in Game 4 of the NLDS).
In Game 1, squaring off against a previously unhittable Halladay (batters were 0-for-34 in the postseason against Halladay up to that point), the Giants' eight-hitter powered home runs to left field in consecutive at-bats against the Phillies' ace, and his two RBI would end up being the difference in a tightly contested 4-3 San Fran win.
The seven-year veteran has driven in the opening run in each of the Giants' last three games (including two home runs) and has slowly moved his way up in the San Francisco batting order, topping out at the five-hole in Tuesday's lineup.
The Giants are hoping that Ross' recent surge will spark an otherwise impotent San Francisco offense that has been searching for consistency at the plate all season long.
Aside from Ross' production, the rest of the San Francisco lineup has combined to hit .189 (18-for-95) with just four runs batted in the first three games of the NLCS and has given no indication that it will heat up anytime soon.
Ahead in the series 2-1, the Giants have an opportunity to put the Phillies in a serious bind with a win in Game 5, and they have a chance to score runs against a very beatable Joe Blanton.
San Francisco may need to rely on Cody Ross to play hero once again for them if they have any hope of reaching their first World Series in eight years.
Jesse Paguaga is a regular contributor to Baseball Digest. He writes as an intern on the Bleacher Report website. Jesse writes for Gotham Baseball, along with Gotham Hoops and Gotham Gridiron. He can be reached at Paguaga@usc.edu and can be found on Facebook and on Twitter http://twitter.com/#!/@jpags77