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Mariners pitcher Cliff Lee may be in midseason form a little too early

It seems to me there are only three goals for teams in spring training: make sure players get in shape, make sure young players develop, and make sure no one gets hurt.

That last tenet seems to be the most important (just ask the New York Mets) however, new Seattle Mariners pitcher Cliff Lee smashed the notion that these games don't count while simultaneously upholding one of the unwritten rules of baseball.

In a spring training game against the Arizona Diamondbacks in Tucson, Ariz., Lee was knocked over by D-backs catcher Chris Snyder while backing up home plate in the first inning.

Possibly in retaliation, Lee threw one pitch inside to Snyder and then one behind him in the bottom of the third inning. Predictably upset, Snyder walked toward the mound, benches cleared and Lee was tossed though no punches were thrown.

Afterward, Lee maintained his innocence: "I was trying to go inside and a couple got away from me."

But Arizona slugger (and Virginia alum) Mark Reynolds isn't buying it, referring to Lee's actions as "bush league" and calling out the former Cy Young Award winner. "I've faced Cliff Lee plenty of times to know he's got amazing control," Reynolds said.

So what do you guys think? Was Cliff Lee completely out of line since, you know, it's a spring training game or was he simply competing as if it were any other game?

By CJ Holley  |  March 16, 2010; 3:41 PM ET
Categories:  Diamondbacks , Mariners  | Tags: arizona diamondbacks, chris snyder, cliff lee, mark reynolds, seattle mariners, spring training  
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