2010 World Series - Rangers vs. Giants: GAME 5 Preview
|Cliff Lee vs. Tim Lincecum: Do or Dead.|
Nolan Ryan has seven no-hitters.
Fergie Jenkins is a Hall of Famer who produced a 25-win season in Arlington.
Kenny Rogers hurled a perfect game at Rangers Ballpark.
But if I could pick any pitcher to be on the mound for the Texas Rangers in an elimination game it would be tonight's World Series Game 5 starter - Cliff Lee. You?
As the Rangers attempt to become the first team to rally from down 3-1 in the Fall Classic since the Kansas City Royals in 1985, they're handing the ball to the right guy. Despite his Game 1 loss in San Francisco, Lee is one of the best playoff pitchers in baseball history.
Tonight will be the first November game in Rangers' history and also the game of the season in Arlington.
Even if they win tonight, the Rangers must find a way to win two straight games at AT&T Park, where they are 0-11 all-time. And if the Rangers don't score - again - they'll become the first World Series team since the 1966 Los Angeles Dodgers to be shut out three games (by the Baltimore Orioles).
But if Texas can somehow scratch out three, two or maybe even just a single run, it might be enough for Lee. He wasn't good in Game 1, allowing seven runs and eights hits in an eventual 11-7 loss.
But a year ago Lee and the Philadelphia Phillies were in the same situation. Trailing the New York Yankees 3-1, Lee pitched seven strong innings and pitched his team back to New York. All-time in the playoffs Lee is 7-1 with a 1.96 ERA.
If the Rangers lose tonight, at least they'll do it with their best pitcher in control of their fate.