Everyone around Major League Baseball knows how good Cliff Lee is but the Atlanta Braves young starting pitcher Alex Wood finds out Sunday night how he stacks up against the Philadelphia Phillies’ ace. There couldn’t be two pitchers on any different paths than Lee and Wood right now and the fact that they are facing each other presents a ton of conflicts going into the game of the week.
Wood is just getting started in his career and showing signs of being a plus starter with ace potential like so many of the Braves young starting pitchers. Lee has been an ace caliber pitcher for years now and remains one of the best in baseball despite having a less than great team to pitch for in the Phillies. Wood’s team is looking for their tenth straight win while Lee’s bunch is wondering what it feels like to win a series about now. The real interesting battle will be in how Wood responds to the battle with the veteran Lee.
If he is ready right now to show what he can do then this could be a great game to watch. On the other hand he might have a few too many nerves and give up a lot of runs. Considering Lee is coming off of a period where he had a stiff neck, I think it will come out fairly even. I at least hope it does. In the end, in a perfect world, both pitchers would pitch wonderfully and the men lining up behind them would decide the game. We will have to see how it turns out and how Wood is affected by this great early career challenge in prime time but I have a feeling that Wood will rise to the occasion and get the win.