It’s not often that elite players are traded multiple times during the prime of their career. Phillies ace Cliff Lee is one of those few, writes Matt Gelb of the Philadelphia Inquirer. He’s been dealt three times – each trade coming at a time when he was both healthy and extremely effective. The 11 prospects acquired for Lee in various trades have all been a disappointment, with Justin Smoak and Carlos Carrasco the only current major league contributors.
The 35-year-old is expected to return to action on Monday from an elbow strain. Unlike the last time the Phillies traded Lee, he now comes with concerns about age, contract, and health. As such, Philadelphia may struggle to find the kind of prospect package necessary to justify a trade.
- Jon Paul Morosi of FOXSports.com talks about the Phillies trade preferences in his latest video. They would prefer to deal Lee, A.J. Burnett, and Marlon Byrd over Cole Hamels and Chase Utley.
- Also per Morosi, the Mariners are under pressure to answer the trades made by the Athletics and Angels. He mentions pitching prospects like Taijuan Walker and Brandon Maurer as interesting pieces to other clubs. If the Mariners fail to pull of a blockbuster for David Price, they’ll probably focus on right-handed power.
- The Cardinals are moving Shelby Miller to the bullpen for an unspecified amount of time, tweets Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. Matheny said the move was to rest the right-hander. Based on Goold’s tweet, he may start again as soon as Wednesday. Earlier in the season, Dave Cameron of FanGraphs provided some evidence that Miller looked “broken.” He’s certainly pitched below expectations with a 4.29 ERA, 6.03 K/9, and 4.46 BB/9.