Cliff Lee vs. C.C. Sabathia in the World Series

It’s hard to imagine a bigger nightmare scenario for Mark Shapiro and the Cleveland Indians. The collapse of the Indians as a contender led Shapiro to trade back-to-back Cy Young Award winners, and now they will be facing each other in game one of the World Series.

Mark Shapiro has done some very good things as the GM of the Indians. He got Cliff Lee in an incredible trade years ago when he traded Bartolo Colon in a salary dump and got back Lee, Grady Sizemore and Brandon Phillips (Shapiro and Eric Wedge managed to let Phillips go for nothing).

However, seeing these two pitchers facing each other in the World Series represents an epic fail for Shapiro and the Indians organization. Having Charlie Manuel managing the Phillies for a chance at his second-straight World Series makes it even worse.

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Pressure is on C.C. Sabathia

C.C. Sabathia is a good guy, so I’m sure many Tribe fans will wish him well as he enters the postseason for the Yankees, despite the fact that Sabathia took the money after saying he really wanted to stay in Cleveland. Of course, most Tribe fans won’t be rooting for Sabathia and the Yankees tonight. Frankly, I’d love to see the Twins pull off the upset.

Indians fans know all too well how Sabathia has come up short in the playoffs. In 2007 the Indians would have gone to the World Series had Sabathia not been out-pitched by Josh Beckett with the Indians holding a 3-1 series lead against Boston. The Tribe would have faced an inferior Colorado Rockies team that was swept by the champion Red Sox.

Can Sabathia rise to the occasion? He’s not the only Yankee that has something to prove. A-Rod the cheater has also been a choke artist in the playoffs (drugs can’t fix everything), so we’ll see how the heavily-favored Yankees do with this new cast of expensive characters.