Originally written on isportsweb.com  |  Last updated 11/15/14
Philadelphia-phillies-lee

When you view the diamond now, the difference is striking for the Philadelphia Phillies and Cliff Lee. Everywhere he looks, he has to smile at the healthy firepower that has his back. TAL’S HANDY CAPS WELCOME, NEWCOMERS: By design my articles represent a baseball man’s thinking, the view from the dugout and the GM’s box. Most fans do not consider the budget, prospects on the radar, the organization’s weaknesses, the track record, the competition and the other intangibles. Please go to my author archives or Phillies page for my most recent coverage. Scroll down to Tal’s Handy Links at the bottom. Thank you. Check out:  Philadelphia Phillies storyline: Lee and the legend The new summer schedule will allow me to publish the best 3 storylines each week, but there will be an updated calendar included with each feature:  These posts involve commentary, polls and stats for the upcoming 7 days. Post time is 5 to 9 pm for the days listed below. April 15 to April 21 Any schedule changes and holdups will be posted at Tal’s Handy Caps on Facebook. BASEBALL FIX SCHEDULEFORMATTIMEFRAMEPUBLISHING StorylineNitecap InsightWed., Fri. & Sun.3 Times a Week Story-pollAgree or Disagree Thur.Once a Week NL East at Game 13 MLB 5 at Game 17Tal's Handy Stats (ERA)Tomorrow Sat.Twice a Week   Howard Singles during the 1st on April 14 in Miami.     NITECAP INSIGHT       Then and Now: Baseball-related gravity descends gradually from the top, but a big, unexpected drop has a bounce factor. Standing on the hill, Lee eyes Ryan Howard at 1st. Chase Utley positions himself near 2nd, while Michael Young mans the hot corner. Last April, only Jimmy Rollins of this unit would join him on the mound during powwows for a few strategy minutes. Rollins, Utley and Howard are 3 of the core four, while Young was a cornerstone in Texas, spearheading two consecutive runs to the Fall Classic. In 2012, Lee saw 1B Ty Wigginton, 2B Freddy Galvis and 3B Placido Polanco instead. From his dugout perch, the southpaw could not possibly think Wigginton, Galvis and the often-injured Polanco were an offensive juggernaut. Last season the meat of the order was cleanup-hitter Hunter Pence, who compensated with a swing-for-the-fences approach, leading to a low batting average and many missed opportunities. Lee could not notch a win even with 10 shutout innings, before his strained body added another degree of frustration. Now, the ace enjoys the attack of Utley, Howard and Young. Utley Makes a Tumbling Play during the 8th on April 14 in Miami. It wasn’t any easier on the bump either, where the infield corners were too often an adventure. How can anybody today feel uncomfortable with Young on third? Remember, it didn’t take long before Polanco started having physical problems, leaving that position in questionable hands. Although Howard has his throwing issues, you know what to expect from him. On the other hand, Galvis provided an almost daily gem with his leather. The 2012 campaign began with the hope that Antonio Bastardo and Mike Stutes would again excel. That said, Bastardo picked up where he left off the previous September with a string of heartburn-inducing outings. Meanwhile, Stutes appeared 6 times and maintained his effectiveness in only half of them, which was the same the prior year from mid-June through September. 12 months later, Mike Adams is here to close the 8th-frame door. Instead of looking forward to the next game last April, fans only had the excruciating wait for May, June and July.   Phillies e-mail notification: Email Notifications   LINK-UP BELOW: A link for Phillies e-mail notification is provided above and below. Any schedule changes and holdups that may occur will be posted at Tal’s Handy Caps on Facebook. This is the 26th storyline for 2013. Check out my recent publication (The Journey) on the Phillies page or my author archives, where there is an excerpt photo. Also, my new feature is Story-poll. The last one was The Lumber Appraisal. I will periodically publish the 2013 ERA for the NL East and the MLB 5. Thank you, to all who bookmarked my page. TAL’S HANDY LINKS Email Notifications TAL’S HANDY CAPS on Facebook  Philadelphia Phillies storyline: Lee and the legend (The Journey) Philadelphia Phillies story-poll: This side of the ball (The Lumber Appraisal) Philadelphia Phillies: 2013 ERA for the MLB 5 at game 11 Philadelphia Phillies: 2013 ERA for the NL East at game 6 Phillies Tal Venada (Author Archives)

MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Pop misses game for medical reasons; Messina takes over

John Beilin upset with ESPN for late start time to game

Tyson Chandler felt like Knicks' scapegoat at times

Fred Jackson has 'no respect' for Donte Whitner

Devon Still responds to unpaid child support allegations

Diamondbacks sign Cuban slugger Yasmany Tomas

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Josh Gordon felt alienated by some in Browns organization

Jerry Jones: I'm a big admirer of Robert Griffin III

Raiola fined for uneccesarily striking Pats' Zach Moore

Report: Michigan keeping Jim Hackett on as athletic director

LeBron James on Ferguson: 'Violence is not the answer'

Decision on Ray Rice's appeal could come Wednesday

Todd Gurley begins rehab after surgery on knee for torn ACL

Brodeur to practice with Blues

OSU player posts Michigan player's girlfriend as his 'WCW'

Jim Harbaugh's family may not eat turkey thanks to NBC

Ole Miss' The Grove threatened by Mississippi State fan

Is it time for the Redskins to move on from Robert Griffin III?

Top 10 fantasy football turkeys for 2014

WATCH: Coyotes lose in ugly fashion, score own goal in OT

Warriors are having tons of fun on team plane

Jenn Sterger hints she'll be back in her FSU cowgirl gear for game

Game of the week: Kansas City Chiefs vs. Denver Broncos

Top storyline for each Week 13 NFL game

MLB News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.

John Beilin upset with ESPN

Should Washington move on from RG3?

Dominic Raiola fined for cheap shots

Game of the week: Kansas City Chiefs vs. Denver Broncos

Rose leaves with injury again

WATCH: Pierce signs for fan during game

Report: McCoy to start over RG3

Braxton Miller headed to Oregon?

10 most one-sided college football rivalries

Pierce: C's Big Three like 'Holy Trinity'

Maclin unhappy with Cooper comments

Post-Week 13 CFB Playoff projection

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
Help
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.