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Cliff Lee gives up 8 runs vs. Rangers, still gets win

Mar 31, 2014, 6:25 PM EDT

Cliff Lee AP AP

Cliff Lee just knows how to win.

While Lee was touched up for eight runs over just five innings in his Opening Day start this afternoon, he was still the winning pitcher as the Phillies pounded the Rangers 14-10 at Globe Life Park. It was the most runs the Phillies had scored in a season opener since 1900.

Lee was given an early 6-0 lead as the Phillies beat up on Tanner Scheppers, who was making his first career start. The big blow was a grand slam from Jimmy Rollins in the top of the second inning. However, Lee quickly gave up the lead by allowing four runs in the bottom of the second inning and three more in the third.

The Phillies eventually took the lead back for good in the fifth inning when John Mayberry, Jr. delivered a pinch-hit two-run double against left-hander Pedro Figueroa. They tacked on four more in the sixth, including a solo home run from offseason acquisition Marlon Byrd, and one run in the eighth on a solo homer from Cody Asche.

This was just the fourth time in Lee’s career that he had allowed eight or more runs in a start. He didn’t allow more than five runs in any of his starts last season. The veteran southpaw the first pitcher to allow at least eight earned runs in a start and still win since the Rays’ Jeremy Hellickson did it last May 17 against the Orioles. If you’ll recall, Lee didn’t get his first win July 4 in 2012 despite pitching pretty well, which tells you all you need to know about how fickle this statistic can be at times. Still, he’ll gladly take the W to start the year.

  1. kruegere - Mar 31, 2014 at 6:26 PM

    TWTW

  2. stabonerichard - Mar 31, 2014 at 6:31 PM

    Lee’s grit is a great sign and could be a sign of good things to come for the 2014 Phils.

    Also, Rollins’ ability to hit with the bases drunk, when the pressure is really on.

    Plenty of reasons to see Philly dominated the NL East this season.

  3. elwaysagenius - Mar 31, 2014 at 6:33 PM

    Just like jack Morris

  4. Earnest Christian - Mar 31, 2014 at 6:43 PM

    Reblogged this on The OpinioNation .

  5. aceshigh11 - Mar 31, 2014 at 6:47 PM

    Dude’s the modern-day Jack Morris, minus the ‘stache.

  6. DelawarePhilliesFan - Mar 31, 2014 at 7:02 PM

    First Phillie to give up 8 ER and get a win since 1981

  7. unclemosesgreen - Mar 31, 2014 at 7:09 PM

    Kill the Win

  8. yahmule - Mar 31, 2014 at 7:16 PM

    In 2012, it took the Phillies until his fifth start to score eight runs for Lee and until his 14th start until they got him a win.

    • yahmule - Mar 31, 2014 at 7:17 PM

      That has got to be the all time record for “untils” in a single ungainly sentence.

      • adenzeno - Mar 31, 2014 at 8:25 PM

        Until the next time this type of event happens….:-)

      • infieldhit - Mar 31, 2014 at 8:44 PM

        Funnily enough, DJ’s write-up accidentally left out an “until” near the end (“first win July 4″).

  9. paperlions - Mar 31, 2014 at 7:46 PM

    Go National League!

    Dominating the AL this year.

    • historiophiliac - Apr 1, 2014 at 12:19 AM

      Stick a sock in it!

  10. sophiethegreatdane - Mar 31, 2014 at 8:34 PM

    He was just pitching to the score.

    PTTS +1

    The rest of you smart guys with your advanced metrics like ERA, and WHIP…well you can just put all that in your pipe and smoke it.

    Just PTTS baby.

    • carpi2 - Apr 1, 2014 at 1:35 AM

      Except, he initially gave up the lead. Never saw a guy give up 8 runs in a game, while maintaining a mindset of “screw it, I’m good. Just pitching to the score.”

  11. storebrandcookies - Mar 31, 2014 at 11:28 PM

    Looks like Kinsler will be sleeping well tonight…

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