2011 National League East Pitching Preview: Cliff Lee and the Phillies

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2011 National League East Pitching Preview: Cliff Lee and the Phillies
Jed Jacobsohn/Getty Images
Cliff Lee

In preparation for the 2011 MLB Fantasy Baseball season, The Fantasy Fix team will preview a team's pitching rotation each day. Tyler starts the series with the National League East's Philadelphia Phillies.

The Fantastic Four have come together to defeat the evil competition in the NL East.

In 2009, we saw the first glimpse of Cliff “Mr. Fantastic” Lee. He made 12 starts going 7-4 with 79.2 IP, a 3.39 ERA and struck out 74 during his successful stretch with the Phillies. Lee was this offseason’s most coveted free agent, and stunned the baseball universe with his decision. However, getting a taste of World Series savor with the Texas Rangers, Lee now joins the rest of his super hero friends in the City of Brotherly Love to try yet again to win it all.

Last year, Mr. Lee won 12 games in 28 starts while posting a 3.19 ERA, striking out 185 and walking only 18 batters in 212 innings. In 2011, Lee should see an increase in wins with all the same stuff: many strikeouts, few walks and a solid ERA in the low to mid three’s.

Beginning with opening day, Cliff will find himself in the midst of a friendly competition with superhero friend Roy “The Thing” Halladay as they dual it out for the title of ace of the rotation.

In his first year in Philly, Roy “The Thing” Halladay used his super-human arm and strength to take down any hitter in his sight. Five complete game shutouts, one perfect game, a no hitter in his first postseason start and a Cy Young to cap it off, Halladay was easily baseball’s top pitcher in 2010.

As 2011 approaches, there is no reason for him to lose his title as the games best arm. His health is no longer a concern as he is about to enter his sixth straight season of 30+ starts. Despite allowing 24 home runs last year, we can say the hitters’ advantage at Citizens Bank Park is not a major liability. Halladay posted a stellar 2.44 ERA and 1.04 WHIP.

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