He doesn't have the celebrity wife. Nor does he have the perfect hair, the perfect changeup, or the World Series MVP on his resume. No,
Lee, who began last season barely good enough to be the Indians' fifth starter, is not a complicated man (asked once what his favorite book was, he replied, "I don't think I've read a book in my life, to be honest"), nor is he a complicated pitcher. He gets ahead of hitters with first-pitch fastballs, he mixes in a decent curve, he sprinkles in an average changeup on occasion. In his first career postseason start, Lee, who allowed six hits and one run while striking out five, shut down the National League's second highest scoring offense by keeping it simple. Against a very patient Rockies lineup that works counts and draws walks (Colorado led the NL in free passes), Lee was efficient and in control, needing 113 pitches over nine innings while not walking a Colorado single hitter.
"He hit his spots, he got ahead early, and he kept the ball down," said Rockies center fielder
With his childhood idol,
The Phillies are a very good all-around team, with few weaknesses, save for one big one: the bullpen. But thanks to Lee, for one game, at least, Phillies fans (and Brad Lidge) could relax. Philly should be considered big favorites to win the series now, as the Phillies appear to have a considerable edge in Game 2, with the October assassin,
Hamels' performance tomorrow will go a long way in revealing how far the Phillies can go this October. If Hamels can rediscover last year's postseason magic, the Phillies, with a new ace on board, will be very tough to beat.