Cliff Lee Appreciation Thread

Dave · June 23, 2010 at 9:45 pm · Filed Under Mariners 

86 2/3 innings pitched, 4 walks, 76 strikeouts. Are you kidding?

This guy is amazing.


30 Responses to “Cliff Lee Appreciation Thread”

  1. andrewjsnider on June 23rd, 2010 9:50 pm

    I have this strange feeling that this was Lee’s last start as a Mariner.

    Thank you, Cliff Lee, for being so awesome.

  2. GoldenGutz on June 23rd, 2010 9:55 pm

    And he missed the first month (4-5 starts) So he atleast has 25-30 more IP and those numbers are even more impressive.

    Thank you for giving us an amazing prospect here soon!!!

  3. the tourist on June 23rd, 2010 9:56 pm

    Um, so let’s trade him and then resign him as a FA. His money+Snell’s money+Griffey’s 2010 money could be the first year in the contract, right…? Right…? 🙂

  4. Coug1990 on June 23rd, 2010 9:56 pm

    And those stats are from just this game.

  5. spokane dude on June 23rd, 2010 9:57 pm

    Watching Cliff Lee is like watching the 2001 Mariners. You knew that 2001 team had a good chance to win most nights. I feel the same with Lee, even with this terrible offense. I love his tempo. I love his competitiveness. And I’m just enjoying every single one of his Mariner starts, knowing that he may well be pitching for someone else soon. I’ll root for him wherever he pitches.

  6. Westside guy on June 23rd, 2010 10:10 pm

    Cliff Lee is simply insane. I know he just can’t maintain this K/BB ratio… but as good as it’s been, lately it’s been going up. It’s absurd.

    I’m really going to miss watching him pitch. So many things have gone wrong this year – but not the Cliff Lee pickup. He’s been better than anyone could have (even unreasonably) expected.

  7. Axtell on June 23rd, 2010 10:15 pm

    Count me among the many who will miss Cliff when he’s gone. The guy is unbelievably good, but wildly underrated when the discussion among the game’s premier pitchers comes up. His numbers this year have been insane – and doing it on a team that’s been out of any real playoff race chance (which makes his focus and dedication even more amazing).

    Cliff, we’re gonna miss ya, but damn its been a thrill watching you pitch this year.

  8. wanderinginsodo on June 23rd, 2010 10:20 pm

    I have never sent fan mail to a baseball player, but I’ve gone to 3 Cliff Lee games this year and they have been the highlights to this otherwise heartbreaking season. He deserves a thread and a thank you card addressed to wherever he ends up next.

  9. Paul L on June 23rd, 2010 10:31 pm

    Hopefully Z goes to the very top in Japan if he has to in order to ensure that it’s not money that prevents Lee from signing here.

    I understand and respect that he wants to explore free agency, but that doesn’t mean that we can’t offer him a huge deal. If he says no, he says no. Just don’t let him go without trying.

  10. RRS for Prez on June 23rd, 2010 10:35 pm

    What was it, like 27 balls he threw tonight?

  11. Carson on June 23rd, 2010 10:44 pm

    0-2 on 19 batters tonight.

    Are… you… freaking… joking?

    I am agonizing more about Cliff leaving than when Junior did (the first time), based on how the latter happened.

    This has been such an amazing treat, and maybe I’m acting too emotional due to my enormous man crush, but even a pile of top prospects won’t make seeing him leave feel good.

    Thank you Cliff, and and thank you Jack for making it happen. It was still a good trade, and I hope you can find a way to bring us another player as special as this.

  12. wanderinginsodo on June 23rd, 2010 10:46 pm

    Also, after reading Lee’s influence on Vargas in regards to helping his with pace, aggressiveness and his cutter, I think that deserves another thank you card.

    His time here might be short, but I hope the rest of the guys learn from his presence and leadership.

    If he is traded it might be the single biggest heartbreak of the season for me.

  13. SonOfZavaras on June 23rd, 2010 11:00 pm

    I have this strange feeling that this was Lee’s last start as a Mariner.

    Thank you, Cliff Lee, for being so awesome.

    You honestly encapsulated the whole thing right there, andrewjsnider.

    I,too, have the same notion that this is the last we’ll see of Lee in a Mariner uniform.

    But, GOOD…LORD.

    86+ IP, 76 SO, 4 walks…0-2 on NINETEEN batters tonight??

    It’s a privilege to watch an artist of this caliber work and call him one of your own, even if just for a little while.

  14. mikeym on June 23rd, 2010 11:10 pm

    Cliff Lee and what he is doing this year is a prime example of why baseball is more fun and interesting than any other sport. When he’s on the hill I can forget about the rest of this season and just marvel at the awesomeness in front of me.

  15. Breadbaker on June 23rd, 2010 11:27 pm

    Mikeym: exactly. Two men on, no problem. His reaction to the errors behind him was anti-Jarrod Washburn. Baseball includes errors, it’s the pitcher’s responsibility to get the next guy out. Did you see his interview after the game? He’s out-thinking the batters. God, he’d make a great pitching coach.

  16. Chris_From_Bothell on June 23rd, 2010 11:29 pm

    I made it a point to go see the game tonight. I wasn’t disappointed. Fantastic weather, good run support, and Cliff Freakin Lee.

    I can’t remember any other game where I could look away for just a moment, and all of a sudden it was 2 outs and he was 0-2 on the current batter. Absolutely unreal.

    Saw him warm up at the bullpen before the game, and yelled out, “Please don’t leave us… or if you do, please don’t become a Yankee”. Actually got a smile out of him for a second…

  17. kenshabby on June 23rd, 2010 11:33 pm

    Only one pitcher since 1901 has had a K:BB ratio over 10:1 for an entire season–Bret Saberhagen in 1994. That season he pitched 177 1/3 innings, along with 143 Ks and 13 BBs (11:1 ratio). So far Cliff has a 19:1 ratio.

  18. MattThompson on June 23rd, 2010 11:54 pm

    I have Diamond Club seats for one game a year and tonight was that game. What a joy to watch that performance. It was amazing how much command Lee had in the zone. I was keeping an eye on the ball and strike numbers posted on the pitch count scoreboard, and at one point, Lee was at 38 pitches – 34 strikes and 4 balls. He struck out Soriano in the second with an absolutely filthy breaking ball, that he was ridiculously early swinging on.

    I’m glad I got to see Lee pitch up close for the Mariners at least once.

  19. DAMellen on June 24th, 2010 12:53 am

    Appreciating him now? Is there reason to think he’s out? Regardless, I loved watching you play, Cliff. I honestly don’t remember having as much fun watching anybody else (and I was here for Randy). And I’ll be happy to surrender a second round draft pick to bring you back for 5/100 or whatever. I’d surrender a first rounder too, but it looks like that won’t be necessary.

  20. hansk on June 24th, 2010 1:05 am

    I have 2 questions about Cliff Lee:

    #1 What happened from 2007 to 2008 that made him such a dominant pitcher? I don’t recall any hype surrounding him prior to 2008 that would have predicted what a pitcher he would become. Any please correct me if I’m wrong, but I don’t think any sabermatics predicted it either. What explains it? A new pitch? And how do we know it won’t disappear as quickly as it came? So maybe we should be selling high.

    #2 Am I correct in assuming that any team that wants to trade for him will want a grace period to work out a long term deal? Is that safe to assume? That if/when he’s traded, he’ll also be removed from the 2010-2011 FA class? Or is there still hope to resigning him then?

  21. dchappelle on June 24th, 2010 5:57 am

    I know it is extremely unlikely and actually probably a waste of assets (given his huge current value this year which is not worth much to the M’s). But I’d love it if the M’s would break the bank and offer Cliff a nearly market offer. At least try before trading him.

  22. florient on June 24th, 2010 9:33 am

    But I’d love it if the M’s would break the bank and offer Cliff a nearly market offer.

    Wouldn’t that just wrap up all our spendin’ money, though? It’s nice that you can count on Lee for a win almost every 5 games… but that might just lead us to another year like this one. I think we should trade while his value is at it’s peak. And isn’t it right now, at this very moment?

  23. Marinersdude83 on June 24th, 2010 9:48 am

    I’m gunna really hate to see Cliff leave Seattle just when he hits full on supernatural god like cruise control.

    Thanks for the awesomness Cliff

  24. msfanmike on June 24th, 2010 10:51 am

    I don’t recall any hype surrounding him prior to 2008 that would have predicted what a pitcher he would become. Any please correct me if I’m wrong, but I don’t think any sabermatics predicted it either. What explains it? A new pitch?

    Sabermetrics didn’t predict it. Sabermetrics is good … damn good … as close to being able to objectively quanitify the unquantifiable” as we have ever seen … but it did not predict this.

    Cliff Lee’s tools and his current confidence in his tools (velocity, command, repeatable delivery, downward plane on his pitches etc.) are driving the bus now. Also, being in a “contract year” and playing half his games in a pitchers ballpark never hurts either.

    3 or 4 years removed from having been demoted to AAA – to what we see now … it’s amazing and certainly not something that could have been charted to occur or have been predicted to occur.

    Maybe his confidence and tools are “juiced.” That’s the closest I can come to an explanation.

    He will regress to the mean (his mean, whatever that new mean of his is) … and he is not worth $20M year x 4 years at his age. He will bring us some very nice prospects – when traded – and for years to come (hopefully) we will be able to thank him for that.

  25. Shanfan on June 24th, 2010 11:06 am

    Dear Jack,
    Please don’t trade Cliff Lee. I don’t care if he leaves and all we get is a supplemental and second round pick. I don’t care if he signs in Japan and we get nothing. Life is short. Tomorrow is not guaranteed. This summer we are able to watch one of the great ones at the top of his game (and so are all of the other pitchers in your organization). This summer, we still have hope that he signs with us. I’ve been a Mariner, and Pilots, fan from the beginning. I’m used to it all. This guy is special this season. This summer, I want to sit on my porch, watch the sun set, and listen to Dave Niehaus call twenty more Cliff Lee starts. I want to stay tuned to twenty more post-game shows. This summer, I want a reason to drive across the prairies and over the mountains and watch a game in person. I know it’s prudent to trade him but screw prudence. I know I know I know I know I know but I don’t care. I don’t care if the band sucks, that’s Elvis up on stage! We’ll survive his leaving like everyone else, we’re used to the rejection and heartbreak. We’ll get over it. We know there’s another dreary winter coming. But this summer, this summer, we’re in love again and don’t want it to end. Please don’t trade Cliff Lee.
    A Longsuffering Fan

  26. Bremerton guy on June 24th, 2010 11:37 am



  27. 6-4-3 on June 24th, 2010 11:46 am

    I don’t recall any hype surrounding him prior to 2008 that would have predicted what a pitcher he would become

    Well he did have an impressive year in 2005 when he finished fourth in Cy Young voting. He was a rising star who faltered, but then came storming back. That doesn’t happen a lot. I think if you look at his stats the walk rates really stand out. When he avoids the free passes he’s very effective.

  28. dlukas on June 24th, 2010 11:50 am

    Whoever gets Cliff Lee–as long as it’s not the Yankees–that’s who I’m rooting for to win the World Series. That guy deserves a ring.

  29. egreenlaw9 on June 24th, 2010 12:44 pm

    If we can’t keep him, I hope the Twins can. For some reason, they’re just a really easy team to root for.

  30. sploorp on June 25th, 2010 5:21 pm

    This is exactly what it was like for us Twins fans when they had to trade Santana. I can feel your pain.

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