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Just six weeks after they were defeated by the Giants in last season's NLCS, the Philadelphia Phillies signed Cliff Lee to a five-year deal.
It was evident in making such a move so swiftly that the Phillies were vowing never to be defeated by better pitching again.
With the addition of Lee to a rotation that already featured Roy Halladay, Roy Oswalt, and Cole Hamels, Philadelphia immediately became the favorite to win the NL pennant in 2011.
The Giants, while they had superior pitching in 2010, had a weak offense, which would now be neutralized even further with Lee in a seven-game series should the two teams meet for an NLCS rematch in 2011.
Now, the Giants have countered with the acquisition of the best bat available on the trade market.
With the addition of Carlos Beltran, the Giants still have very comparable, if not better starting pitching than Philadelphia, an arguably better bullpen (though the Phillies' 'pen has been fantastic this season), and now a comparable offense.
While the Phillies have some big bats in their lineup (Howard, Utley, Rollins, etc.) they are only hitting .249 as a team (11th in the league, with San Francisco close behind at 13th with a .241 average).
With the offensive infusion of Beltran for the Giants, they could very well catch the Phillies in many offensive categories, giving them an overall edge in postseason play, being that they already have the edge with superior pitching.