Cliff Lee Trade Rumors: 5 Deadline Day Rumors Surrounding Phillies' Star
With this year's non-waiver trade deadline just hours away, it's hard to believe that a number of top names have yet to change hands.
That said, expect today to be a busy one for general managers throughout the league as they look to do whatever they can to buy or sell in a way that positions their organization for success.
The Philadelphia Phillies have been noted as big sellers, with Joe Blanton, Juan Pierre, Shane Victorino and Hunter Pence possibly on the block.
Cliff Lee's name hasn't been mentioned nearly as much, though a pitcher of his caliber has to be in any discussion about deadline day blockbusters.
Here are some rumblings surrounding the Phillies' star that have come across the rumor mill recently.
New York Yankees
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With a massive payroll as it is, you couldn't help but wonder if one of these big name arms would be headed to the New York Yankees before today's deadline comes and goes.
There's been some steam behind Cliff Lee's potential departure from Philadelphia, though Bryan Hoch of MLB.com has pointed out that the Yankees can't take on a contract like his at this point and if he goes anywhere, it won't be New York.
Los Angeles Dodgers
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The resurgent Los Angeles Dodgers have certainly been busy this July, adding Hanley Ramirez from the Miami Marlins to add some pop in the lineup and more recently acquiring Brandon League from the Seattle Mariners.
It would be understandable if the team didn't make further moves leading up to today's deadline, but that didn't stop rumors about Cliff Lee making a stop in Los Angeles from circulating, though Jon Heyman of CBSsports.com noted that money would be the biggest roadblock in a potential deal.
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Overnight the rumors surrounding the Diamondbacks' desire to pull off a blockbuster deal became more and more frequent, with Cliff Lee being mentioned as one of the names that could be in the mix.
At this point it's worth noting that the Diamondbacks are one of the teams that Lee can block a trade to.
Bob Nightengale of USA Today also reported this morning that the Diamondbacks have taken the time to downplay any rumors about Lee, noting that Upton (who could be necessary for such a deal) is staying put.
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With the Los Angeles Angels loading up for a major second half push, you might say that there's a certain amount of pressure on the Texas Rangers to counter with a move on par with the Zack Greinke acquisition.
Recently, the team had been contemplating the idea of bringing Cliff Lee back to Texas, though as Jon Heyman of CBSsports.com has pointed out, the notion is a longshot at this point, while Buster Olney of ESPN considers Texas to be the most logical landing spot.
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Despite all these rumors, the most likely scenario for this afternoon's deadline sees Lee staying put in Philadelphia.
With the Phillies open to cleaning house and moving a number of other players, Cliff Lee, Roy Halladay and the recently extended Cole Hamels represent stability in a division that's primed to be more and more competitive as the years move on.
Ken Rosenthal of FOXsports.com pointed out earlier that the team wasn't willing to take on much salary in any trade, which can often times be a deal killer.