Tim Lincecum and Cliff Lee will kick off the 2010 World Series at AT&T Park on Wednesday night—the matchup everyone wanted and expected to see was officially greenlit when San Francisco Giants' manager Bruce Bochy announced the Freak would get Game 1.
Cliff Lee, cooling his heels since his October 18th start in Game 3 of the American League Championship Series, was tabbed as the Texas Rangers' go-to guy the minute his mates eliminated the New York Yankees in Game 6 of the ALCS.
When the lefty with pinpoint control and the diminutive right-handed fireballer take the mound against each other, they'll carry with them three of the last four Cy Young awards and a set of dominant '10 playoff performances.
Lee has yet to whiff less than 10 batters in a start this postseason and has posted the following line—3 GS, 3 W, 24 IP, 13 H, 2 ER, 1 BB, 34 K, a 0.58 WHIP, and a 0.75 ERA.
Not only that, he's done it in 16 frames against the Tampa Bay Rays and eight versus the New York Yankees.
The Franchise hasn't been quite as nifty, but consider that this is Lincecum's first playoff rodeo and he's still a relatively green 26 years of age (by comparison, Lee is 32). Placed in context his nine-inning masterpiece against the Atlanta Braves in his debut is all the more dazzling (9 IP, 2 H, 0 ER, 1 BB, 14 K).
Timmy then outdueled Roy Hallladay twice—14 IP, 10 H, 5 ER, 4 BB, 15 K versus 13 IP, 14 H, 6 ER, 2 BB, 12 K, and an injured groin—to lead the successful insurgency against the defending National League Champion Philadelphia Phillies.
If these two elite twirlers pitch to their reputations and recent exploits in Game 1, they could easily wind up on this list.
Until then, however, here is the list of the top 10 World Series matchups in the history of Major League Baseball: