If there are any Phillies fans out there setting up some sort of grandiose proposition toward Phillies pitcher Cliff Lee over the course of the 2014 season, the bar has officially been set.
— Anthony Castrovince (@castrovince) February 23, 2014
MLB.com’s Anthony Castrovince was at spring training penning an article about Lee needing to be the veteran presence the rest of the Phillies aging core needs to look towards for inspiration for extending their careers. Given the sheer dominance and consistency shown by Lee in his four seasons pitching for the Phillies, the smooth lefty has clearly developed a very passionate fanbase.
The most puzzling aspect of this estranged gesture to the former Cy Young winner is: why nails? Lee doesn’t throw a knuckleball or any sort of pitches that require one to utilize the cuticles in such a way. He is much more known for his pinpoint placement on a variety of fastballs and cutters. While it is hard to knock a fan for one-upping the human sacrifice game when it comes to reaching out to the Phillies, the lack of apparent creativity leaves much to be desired.
Possible twist? The nails were chewed off during Lee’s start during the 2011 NLDS when he blew a 4-0 lead and allowed the Cardinals to even the series en route to a five-game win. Hopefully we’ll never actually find out the reason.