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MLB Trade Rumors: Phillies’ Cliff Lee Likely to Waive No-Trade Clause; Yankees Continue to Make Most Sense for Trade

July 18th, 2014 at 9:52 PM
By Douglas Rush

On Friday, it was reported that the Philadelphia Phillies would likely not be inclined to trade Cole Hamels and instead, hang onto their 30-year-old ace for the rest of the 2014 season.

The Phillies however, will likely try to trade Cliff Lee once he returns from the disabled list on Monday when he starts for the first time since May against the San Francisco Giants. The Phillies would prefer to trade Lee as opposed to Hamels this month, as Jon Heyman of CBS Sports and WFAN reported.

"The strong belief, based on talks so far with the Phillies, is that the team would much prefer to trade Cliff Lee than Cole Hamels."

Lee has a no-trade clause with 20 teams on the list, the New York Yankees are on the list, but as Heyman reported, Lee is likely to be inclined to waive the no-trade clause if it means he gets to pitch for a contender and another chance at the postseason.

"Both Lee and Hamels have no-trades with at least 20 teams on them, but people around the team suggest Hamels is more likely to invoke his, as he wants to remain in Philly. Lee, like closer Jonathan Papelbon, would likely choosing winning over city, they say."

With CC Sabathia now out for the rest of the season due to needing arthroscopic knee surgery and Masahiro Tanaka potentially headed for Tommy John Surgery, the Yankees need pitching if they want to keep up in the playoff race and keep up with the Baltimore Orioles, who are five games ahead of them and the Toronto Blue Jays, who are just one game ahead of the Yankees, which is why Lee continues to make sense for them.

With Lee set to return and having 10 days to showcase himself, the Yankees likely wouldn't have to deal away top prospects to the Phillies, especially if they absorb the remainder of his $50 million on his deal for 2014 and 2015.

With Lee set to pitch on Monday and come back from his two-month hiatus from the DL, the Yankees eyes will likely be on Philadelphia with possible scouts in attendance watching the 35-year-old lefty to see if they can add him to a rotation that is so thin right now.


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