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Cliff Lee Dominates Yankees As Rangers Take ALCS Lead

Cliff Lee was dominant again on Monday night as he and Neftali Feliz combined to pitch a shutout as the Rangers defeated the Yankees 8-0 and took a 2-1 ALCS series lead.

Lee pitched eight spectacular innings, walking one and giving up only two hits while striking out 13. By striking out 13, Lee has now accomplished something no other pitcher in baseball history has. It was his third double-digit strikeout game of the postseason which is an all-time Major League record for an individual postseason. Lee has also tied himself with Bob Gibson and Randy Johnson for the all-time record for double-digit strikeout performances in a postseason career with five.

Texas scored in the first inning again on Monday when Josh Hamilton belted a two-run homer off Andy Pettitte. It was the third time in as many games that the Rangers scored in the first inning against the Yankees.

Pettitte pitched well for New York aside from allowing Hamilton’s home run. He lasted seven innings, giving up two runs on five hits, walking none and striking out five.

Texas held a 2-0 advantage headed into the ninth inning where the Rangers offense broke the game open. Nelson Cruz singled home Josh Hamilton to give Texas a 3-0 lead before Bengie Molina singled, scoring pinch-runner Julio Borbon. Mitch Moreland added a bases loaded single to give the Rangers a 6-0 lead. Elvis Andrus doubled which plated Molina to give Texas a 7-0 advantage. The last of the damage came when Moreland scored on a Sergio Mitre wild pitch, giving Texas the 8-0 lead that they’d win by.

David Robertson was the abused pitcher in the ninth, giving up five runs on five hits while only recording one out. Boone Logan also was charged with an earned run and didn’t record an out.

Texas will send Tommy Hunter to the mound in Game 4 as the Rangers look to take a commanding 3-1 series lead that would put them a game away from clinching their first American League pennant in franchise history. New York will counter with A.J. Burnett.

Photographs by jamesbrandon, jdtornow, phlezk, flygraphix, mcdlttx, tomasland, and literalbarrage used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.