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Cliff Lee of the Philadelphia Phillies voted National League Pitcher of the Month for August09/06/2011 5:47 PM ET
Philadelphia Phillies starting pitcher Cliff Lee has been voted National League Pitcher of the Month for the month of August.
In five August starts, Lee was a perfect 5-0 with a 0.45 ERA, the lowest among qualifying Major League starters, after allowing just two earned runs over 39.2 innings pitched. After going 5-0 with a 0.21 ERA in June, he is the first pitcher in Major League history to have two months in one season with at least five wins, zero losses and an ERA under 0.50. The left-hander's five wins were tied for the most in baseball this month while his 39 strikeouts were tied for fourth among National Leaguers. On August 4th, the Arkansas native tossed a complete-game shutout at San Francisco, striking out eight and scattering seven hits across his 9.0 innings of work. On August 9th, Lee posted his 17th-career double-digit strikeout game, fanning 10 Dodgers in 8.0 innings of work. It was his eighth double-digit strikeout game of the season, which is the most by a Phillies pitcher in a single season since Curt Schilling had 15 in 1998. Lee allowed his only earned runs of the month on August 17th vs. Arizona in a 7.0-inning outing that resulted in a 9-2 victory. He returned to shutout form in his August 22nd start vs. the New York Mets, holding them scoreless over 7.0 innings. On August 31st, the 33-year-old veteran was one out short of his seventh complete-game shutout of the season, tossing 8.2 scoreless innings in a 3-0 win at Cincinnati in which he allowed just six hits and a single walk. With six shutouts this year, Lee ranks first among Major League pitchers. His career-best 204 strikeouts this season rank second in the National League while his 2.47 ERA is the third-lowest. This is his fifth career monthly award, having won previously in April and August of 2008 with Cleveland, June 2010 while with Seattle and June of this year. He is the first Phillies pitcher to win the award twice in the same season.
Other pitchers receiving votes were starter Clayton Kershaw (5-1, 1.55 ERA, 39 SO, 46.1 IP) of the Los Angeles Dodgers; Atlanta's rookie reliever Craig Kimbrel (0-0, 0.00 ERA, 10 SV, 23 SO, 4 BB, 6 H, 12.2 IP); and Milwaukee Brewers closer John Axford (0-0, 1.46 ERA, 10 SO, 9 H, 5 BB, 12.1 IP).
The National League Pitcher of the Month for August 2011, Cliff Lee, will receive specially designed trophy, suitably engraved, to commemorate his performance.
This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.