Could Lee Be Moved?
This is all speculation of course, as David Murphy haughtily noted earlier this week. It is interesting to note, however, that John Heyman recently reported that Texas is a team that is NOT on Cliff Lee’s 21-team no-trade list. Texas, of course, is in first place and has missed winning the World Series two years in a row. I would imagine that would make them serious about winning one this year, and serious about making a trade to improve their team. Cliff Lee has had a disappointing season so far, especially for his salary. It is important not to make rash decisions and trade someone who still has great stuff and is coming off a very, very good year.
That being said, Texas has two great infield prospects (yes, just prospects) at third and short. Against, this is purely hypothetical, but it may be worth considering trading Lee, keeping Hamels, and getting much younger (and probably better) at third base with Mike Olt. Yes, he is in AA, but having a great year and is a highly-touted prospect. I would find it hard to believe he could not give just as much production at third than Polanco, if not more. The Rangers also have a big-time SS prospect in Jurickson Profar. Being very young (just 19 and in AA) I would not see him starting in the bigs next year or even on the bench. But as we know, Jimmy is not getting any younger, so it would be nice to have someone in AAA who could eventually take the reigns. And I haven’t forgotten about Galvis, but his bat is still suspect, and he has shown he can be a possible successor to Utley.
I am not the RAJ, so there is no pressure on me to throw these scenarios around and make fantasy trades. Also, I am working under the assumption that Texas would want Lee. I really don’t know, either, if Texas would trade those two for Lee, or if the Phillies would want more than that. I’m just a caveman. What I do know is that, RAJ has to be creative this year/off-season in order to stay competitive and rebuild a bit at the same time. Trading Lee should be on the table.