Originally posted on Philly Sports World  |  Last updated 6/30/12

Cliff Lee will make $21.5 million this year, but is currently 0-5 with a 4.13 ERA. He has pitched the first 3 months of the season without a win, and that is unacceptable.

It’s no longer a matter of waiting for Cliff Lee to find his form. There is not the luxury of time now. It’s also not about a lack of run support, though he got little of that last night. Cliff Lee is just not pitching well. He’s not even playing well at this point.

When you make $21.5 million, like Cliff Lee does this year, you’re supposed to be, well, money. Lee has been anything but this year. He is now 0-5 with a 4.13 ERA.

It’s hard to pinpoint the problems with Lee. He just hasn’t been able to hit his spots at times, and even when he does he has appeared incredibly hittable to opposing teams. Lee’s early season struggles could be attributed to bad defense, a lack of run support and bad baseball. Over his last 5 starts, it has been a combination of bad pitching, frustration and blown leads. And that is on Cliff Lee.

The Phillies are now 10 games out of first place. Just when it looks like things are getting better, they get worse again. Getting Chase Utley back was supposed to be a boost to the team. While it started off in grand fashion, it has done little more than set off a three-game losing streak at a time when the team can ill afford one.

The Miami Marlins are a bad team. The Phillies are worse according to the standings. Not even the return of a key player or a pitcher making $21.5 million seems to be able to make it better.

The frustration was obvious on Cliff Lee’s face. And that is an unusual thing for a guy who usually keeps his emotions in check and has ice water in his veins.

The Phillies need the Cliff Lee from 2008 who went 22-3 en route to the Cy Young Award with Cleveland. What they’re getting is more like the 2007 Cliff Lee who went 5-8 with a 6.29 ERA en route to being left off of Cleveland’s postseason roster. At that point in his career, Lee used to his bad performance as motivation to get his career back on track.

At this point it just comes down to letting down your team. And we’ve come to expect so much more from Lee. So far this year, we haven’t gotten it.

Similar Posts:

  • While Lee and Doc Struggle, the Rest of the Phillies Starters Have Carried the Load
  • Phillies Pitching Needs to Improve to Sustain a Run
  • Utley Brings More Than a Bat to Phillies
  • Why the Phillies Need to Pay Cole Hamels
  • Is The Golden Age of Phillies Baseball Ending?

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