If you are Philadelphia Phillies starter Cliff Lee there are some things that come with the territory. Being the subject of trade rumors year after year is as much a part of him as being handed the ball every five days. Lee’s been traded three times, including an offseason deal from Philadelphia to Seattle.
In fact Lee he accepts this part of the business when asked about the possibility of being traded. “Nothing I can do about it, so I’m not going to get too caught up in it.” Lee said.
Lee is 7-2 with a 2.45 ERA over 88 innings in 2013. The 34-year-old has shown there are still plenty in the tank.
However, just because the probability is high that he will be traded his contract with the Phillies includes a 20 team no trade clause Unless he waives the clause the Phillies will be restricted to nine teams to try and strike a deal.
The New York Yankees, Boston Red Sox, Texas Rangers and Baltimore Orioles are among the 20 teams that would need Lee’s permission to acquire him, the sources told FOXSports.com. The Orioles are in desperate need of pitching and the Rangers would likely be interested as well.
Lee is owed a minimum of $62.5 million on his deal after this year according to Cot’s Baseball Contracts. Lee was claimed by the Dodgers last August on waivers but Phillies general manager Ruben Amaro pulled him back.
The Phillies are a disappointing third in the NL East at 28-30 and unless Domonic Brown can bat every inning, the season isn’t filled with a lot of hope going forward.
Had the Phillies discussed with him the possibility of a trade?
“Every time I’ve been traded, before that every organization would say, ‘You’ll be the first one to know if we’re ever going to move you,’” Lee said, recalling that he learned of each trade while watching television. “I was the last one to know every time.”
That would seem to indicate they haven’t and have no plans to do so.