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Wednesday October 13, 2010 7:21 pm

Cliff Lee makes history with the Texas Rangers

Posted by Adrien Griffin Categories: Athletes, MLB, Playoffs,

Cliff LeeIf you ever try to define the word "that," you should start by describing Cliff Lee; as in "Cliff Lee is that good." The oft-traded ace went out on Tuesday night and made pitching look as easy as finger painting in shutting down the Tampa Bay Rays for the second time in their ALDS matchup, setting a number of records along the way. If you saw the game, you could only be left with one thought: "That was one hell of a performance."

Lee hurled a complete game with 11 strikeouts and no walks. In Game 1, he went seven innings with 10 strikeouts and no walks. His two starts combined made him the first pitcher in postseason history to throw 21 strikeouts in a series without walking a batter. Also in postseason history, only seven times has a pitcher pitched at least seven innings with 10 Ks and no walks. Cliff Lee has done it four of those seven times.

The unfortunate part in the Rangers' first-ever postseason series win is that they can't use Lee in Game 1 against the New York Yankees on Friday night. He may not even pitch in Game 2 on Saturday. As Lee showed last season with the Philadelphia Phillies, he does not like pitching on short rest. His next scheduled day would be Sunday, but that's an off-day, so he would actually throw on extra rest in Game 3, making his next eligible start Game 7 if the series goes that far.

The Rangers now have to battle history. In the franchise's three prior postseason series, they've lost all of them to the Yankees. In order to have the best chance at finally winning one against New York, they'll need Cliff Lee to suck it up and throw in Game 2. When you're far and away the best, you need to do everything you can to help your team win, and there's no doubt in Texas that Cliff Lee is the best.



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