Cliff Lee: The AL Cy Young Award Winner
Posted by Andrew JT Gelinas on November 13, 2008
November 13- No one would have guessed it. It was crazy for someone at the beginning of the year to believe that this could possibly happen. But, it did. Last year at about the all star break, Cliff Lee was at his house dreaming about the good days of 2004 and 2005 where he and C.C. Sabathia were a dynamic duo in Cleveland. In those two years, Lee had 32 wins, 13 losses, and 306 Ks. He seemed to be an up and coming pitcher in the AL. Then two years of struggle followed. In 2006, Lee had 14 wins but 11 losses. The worst though, was yet to come.
Lee got ready with his Indians for the 07 season. Although the team was ready during spring training, Lee suffered forom an abdominal strain which cost him some of the season. When he finally returned in May, he wasn’t his consistent self. In his 16 starts of his ordeal, he posted a 5-8 record with a 5.36 ERA. To say the least, he was struggling mightily. The climax of this ordeal was when he beaned Sammy Sosa in the head on July 21st. Ironically, Sosa would hit his 600th homer later in that game. He was sent down to Triple A Buffalo until September where he had bullpen apperences.
So, 2007 was a dismal year to say the least. Then 2008 rolled around and people had their doubts. Would he be a consistent pitcher or a pitcher who had a very dismal year? Well, Cliff had one of the best comeback years in history. His fastball was in full form along with his other pitches. He showed a great deal of consistency all year. He pitched 31 times last year where he accumulated a whopping 22 wins and only lost 3. His ERA was 2.54. He won great honors including his first trip to the All star game at Yankee Stadium, he won the Comeback Player of the year in the AL, and now, he has won the CY Young award in the AL. His numbers do not lie.
Cliff Lee had a great turnaround year this year and I believe that he can do it several times in the rest of his Career.