Cliff Lee Returns to Philly
And just like that, Cliff Lee is once again a member of the Philadelphia Phillies.
The deal isn’t final, but it looks like we’ll soon see Lee back in red and white. Lee reportedly turned down millions of extra dollars from the New York Yankees and Texas Rangers, opting to return to the city that sources say he and his family were “heartbroken” to leave following Lee’s trade to Seattle. Instead of becoming yet another huge signing for the Yankees, or returning to the World Series runners-up Rangers, Lee took a five-year, $120-million contract with a $27.5-million sixth-year option. Ironically, Joe Blanton, the same man who forced the Phillies to trade Lee in order to create space on the payroll, could be traded to…create space on the payroll.
Lee joins Roy Halladay, Cole Hamels, and Roy Oswalt as part of a four-man pitching rotation that, at least on paper, seems nearly unstoppable. However, these four only have one World Series Championship between them. One has to wonder how much a former All-Star and Cy Young winner can add to three other former All-Stars (and, in the case of Halladay, two-time former Cy Young winner). The success of the new-look Phillies remains to be seen.
If this signing brings Philadelphia a championship, though, maybe they should change their team name to the “Phil-Lees.”