Cliff Lee Could be Philadelphia Phils' Deadline Solution

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Cliff Lee Could be Philadelphia Phils' Deadline Solution
(Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)
So much has been made of the talks between J.P. Ricciarddi and Ruben Amaro, Jr. about bringing Roy Halladay to Philadelphia. In fact, too much. Philadelphians have obsessed over this “baseball god” and “savior” for weeks now.

But as the deadline inches closer, maybe it’s time for Amaro to move on. The price for Halladay is just too steep.


“If the Phillies think for one minute that they’re going to get [Halladay] for anything other than top dollar, they’d better go get Cliff Lee,” a baseball executive told Jayson Stark of ESPN.com.

So maybe Amaro should move on to someone a little cheaper. Someone who could be of similar value to Halladay, but not quite as elite. Maybe Amaro should take a look at Lee.

Lee, who’ll be 31 next month, is a two time Cy Young Award Winner and proven pitcher, who could bolster the Phillies deep into the playoffs. And he won’t come at too steep of a cost.

He seems to be the perfect fit.

Though accomplished pitchers always come with a price-tag, Lee might only cost you pitching prospect Kyle Drabek, as apposed to Drabek and lefty J.A. Happ, as the Blue Jays demanded.

An Indians scout (as well as a Blue Jays scout) was in Reading tonight, where Drabek improved to 7-1, going seven strong innings.

CSNPhilly.com Phillies beat writer and friend of Phillie Phanatics, John Finger talked to Drabek after the game about all of the rumors flying around. “It’s a little weird,” Drabek said. “I didn’t think it would happen like this, but I’m trying not to think about it. I just go out there and pitch.”

But weird or not, the end may be near for Drabek, as he’d be the logical piece in a trade for Lee.

Drabek wouldn’t complete the deal though, and another likely piece would be Carlos Carrasco. Assistant General Manager Chuck Lamar told Dave Murphy from the Philadelphia Daily News that the organization holds Carrasco in high regard.

“He’s one of the top pitching prospects, not only in our organization, but in all of minor league baseball,” Lamar said.

“He’s thrown the curve ball almost exclusively since we signed him. He’s one of those unique guys who can spin the ball, and he can throw both (the slider and the curve).”

Lamar said he has seen an improvement in Carrasco’s ability to pitch inside, an art that takes many pitchers a long time to master.

“It never seems to come easy to anybody,” Lamar said. “Carlos has adapted quicker than we thought he would. And I know in his last couple of starts he’s done a good job of challenging a guy inside.”

But with Carrasco and Drabek highly regarded by the organization, you can’t help but wonder if Amaro will be willing to pull the trigger.

It’s a high reward trade with the risk of losing some future greats. Count on Amaro to do what’s right. He’s been dead on so far.

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