Monday, December 13, 2010

Believe it: Phillies are in on Cliff Lee

The rumor that just won't die suddenly has new life again: according to multiple sources, the Phillies are one of the finalists in the pursuit of free agent Cliff Lee. While it seems incredibly unlikely and improbable that the Phillies, a team already loaded with starting pitching, would be looking to sign yet another ace pitcher to their rotation, respected sources like Ken Rosenthal of Fox Sports and Jon Heyman of SI have confirmed that the Phillies, along with the Yankees and Rangers, are on the short list of teams that have a shot of landing Lee. Anyone interested in a rotation of Lee, Roy Halladay, Cole Hamels and Roy Oswalt? Yes, please.

While it's hard not to get positively giddy about the possibility of Lee coming back to Philly, all indications are that the Phillies are longshots to sign him. With the Yankees and Rangers both making huge contract offers for a lot of years that the Phillies can't compete with, their best hope of signing Lee will be if he wants to take a pay cut to return to a team he is already comfortable playing with in a city that absolutely loves him. The Phillies would also probably have to move some salary to make room for Lee, with Joe Blanton and (hopefully) Raul Ibanez being the most likely candidates.

Before we get too excited about having the greatest rotation in baseball history, remember that Lee signing in Philly is a remote possibility. After all, when was the last time a professional athlete left money on the table and signed for less than his market value?

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