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Cliff Lee | Starting Pitcher | #33

Team: Philadelphia Phillies
Age / DOB:  (39) / 8/30/1978
Ht / Wt:  6'3" / 205
Bats / Throws: Left / Left
College: Arkansas
Drafted: 2000 / Rd. 4 (0) / WAS

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Cliff Lee's agent, Darek Braunecker, told FOX Sports' Ken Rosenthal that they don't expect the veteran left-hander to return at this point.
Braunecker has said all along that it would take a "perfect" situation for his client to make a comeback and it sounds like he simply didn't get the offer he wanted. Barring something unexpected, his career is likely over. The 37-year-old was arguably the best pitcher in baseball from 2008-2013, winning a Cy Young Award along the way, but he was plagued by elbow issues over the last two years. Tue, Feb 23, 2016 09:10:00 AM

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Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe reports that teams have been "unsure about devoting $6-8 million, plus incentives" to Cliff Lee.

It's certainly understandable after Lee missed most of the last two seasons with elbow issues. Lee's agent, Darek Braunecker, said last month that his client would need a "perfect" situation if he's to pitch in 2016, and it doesn't sound like that situation is close to presenting itself. The left-hander turned 37 last August.
Source: Boston Globe
Sun, Feb 7, 2016 10:36:00 AM

Darek Braunecker, the agent for Cliff Lee, told MLB Network Radio that Lee would need a "perfect" situation if he's to pitch in 2016.

Lee sat out the 2015 season with a torn flexor tendon. Indeed, he hasn't pitched since July 31, 2014. The 37-year-old southpaw opted not to undergo surgery in the hopes that the injury would heal naturally. Jon Heyman of CBS Sports reported in early December that Lee's searching for a one-year contract and that 15 teams have shown interest in him. Per Braunecker, it's yet to be determined whether Lee will do full workout showcases for interested clubs. The off-shoot of all of this is that if Lee doesn't see a contract and team-fit to his liking, he could sit out the 2016 season.
Sun, Jan 3, 2016 02:35:00 PM

CBS Sports' Jon Heyman reports that free agent left-hander Cliff Lee is looking for a one-year MLB deal.

In other words, he's looking for a guaranteed deal despite not having thrown a pitch in the majors since July 31, 2014. The 37-year-old has reportedly drawn interest from 15 teams thus far, but not many figure to be willing to go that far. However, somebody will surely take a chance on his upside.
Tue, Dec 8, 2015 08:50:00 AM

CBS Sports' Jon Heyman reports that Cliff Lee is drawing interest from 15 teams.

It was Heyman who reported last week that Lee has received medical clearance and is currently throwing with no issues. The veteran left-hander missed all of the 2015 campaign with a torn flexor tendon and would remain a major health risk for 2016. However, it's no surprise that there are interested parties on what would surely be an incentive-laden deal.
Mon, Dec 7, 2015 07:00:00 PM

According to Jon Heyman of CBS Sports, left-hander Cliff Lee (elbow) has received medical clearance and is currently throwing with no issues.

Lee missed the entire 2015 season after being diagnosed with a torn flexor tendon in his throwing elbow during spring training. Philly made the easy decision to decline his $27.5 million option for 2016 (instead paying a $12.5 million buyout) and the veteran southpaw is now a free agent. Heyman says Lee will pitch next season "if he finds the right fit."
Thu, Dec 3, 2015 01:34:00 PM

Phillies declined their 2016 club option on LHP Cliff Lee.

Lee didn't pitch at all this season after being diagnosed with a torn flexor tendon during spring training. His 2016 option was worth $27.5 million, so the Phillies elected to pay him a $12.5 million buyout instead. He's now officially a free agent and his career could very well be over.
Tue, Nov 3, 2015 11:24:00 AM

The Phillies will not pick up Cliff Lee's option for 2016.

That means Lee is headed for free agency. It's a no-brainer for the Phils as Lee would have earned $27.5 million. Instead, they'll buy him out for $12.5 million. The 37-year-old didn't pitch this year after tearing his flexor tendon during spring training.
Sat, Sep 26, 2015 07:01:00 PM

Cliff Lee (forearm) still hasn't been cleared to begin throwing.

"He’s not going to begin throwing for another three or four weeks," Phillies general manager Ruben Amaro said. "He’s doing well. He’s in great shape. He’s taking care of himself, but he’s not really prepared to start throwing yet. We’ll see what happens over the next month or so. Probably in another month or so we’ll know a little more. Best-case [scenario] he’d be throwing right about now. He’s not ready to do it." Lee is still contemplating surgery on his left arm, a procedure that comes with a nine-month recovery period. Either way, it doesn't sound like we'll see the southpaw before 2016 at this point.
Source: CSN Philly
Wed, Jun 17, 2015 11:06:00 PM

Phillies placed LHP Cliff Lee on the 60-day disabled list with a left forearm strain.

Surgery has been recommended, but Lee will attempt to rehab the injury for a third time. If he had the surgery now, his 2015 season would be over anyway, so it's worth a shot. Still, there's a very good chance that he won't pitch at all this season. And given that he'll be 37 later this year, he might eventually just decide to hang it up. It would be a shame to see it end this way, but he's had an amazing run.
Mon, Mar 16, 2015 04:40:00 PM

Cliff Lee (elbow) did not throw Sunday or Monday.

Lee was diagnosed early last week with a torn flexor tendon in his left elbow and didn't feel very good after trying to play catch Friday. Now it seems the Phillies have basically shut him down. Season-ending surgery could be on the horizon for the veteran left-hander.
Mon, Mar 16, 2015 03:51:00 PM

Cliff Lee said after playing catch Friday that his ailing left elbow felt the "same as yesterday."

The Phillies and Lee haven't given up hope that the left-hander will be able to pitch through a tear in the common flexor tendon in his left elbow. However, it's probably a matter of when, not if, he'll have surgery. Lee has admitted that an operation could threaten his career, which is no doubt why he's attempting, at least for now, to pitch through it.
Fri, Mar 13, 2015 03:58:00 PM

Cliff Lee (elbow) said that the pain had not subsided after he threw a bullpen session on Wednesday.

Dr. James Andrews diagnosed a tear in the common flexor tendon of Lee's left elbow on Tuesday. Lee is hopeful that he'll be able to pitch through the injury, but if he's unable to, season-ending surgery would be the next step. The Phillies do not seem optimistic that Lee is going to see this through without going under the knife. Lee is owed $25 million this season.
Wed, Mar 11, 2015 11:41:00 AM

Dr. James Andrews determined that Cliff Lee has a tear in the common flexor tendon in his left elbow.

In other words, it's the same injury from last year and matches the initial diagnosis from the weekend. Lee will try to throw through it to see if his condition improves, but surgery would sideline him for 6-8 months. Phillies general manager Ruben Amaro, Jr. isn't optimistic about his chances of avoiding surgery, so it's beginning to look like he won't pitch at all this season. Lee is owed $25 million this season and has a $12.5 million buyout on his 2016 club option.
Tue, Mar 10, 2015 01:17:00 PM

Cliff Lee (elbow) played catch Tuesday.

Lee felt discomfort in his left elbow Sunday after tossing two innings last Thursday in his Grapefruit League debut. An MRI on the elbow showed mild inflammation, but the Phillies sent the results to Dr. James Andrews for a second opinion. We should have more clarity on his status soon, but don't count on seeing him in game action in the near future.
Tue, Mar 10, 2015 11:04:00 AM

Depth Charts

C1Jorge Alfaro
2Andrew Knapp
1B1Carlos Santana
2B1Cesar Hernandez
2Jesmuel Valentin
SS1Scott Kingery
2Pedro Florimon
3B1J.P. Crawford
2Maikel Franco
LF1Rhys Hoskins
2Dylan Cozens
CF1Odubel Herrera
RF1Aaron Altherr
2Nick Williams
Starting Pitcher
S1Aaron Nola
2Jake Arrieta
3Jerad Eickhoff
4Vince Velasquez
5Nick Pivetta
6Zach Eflin
Relief Pitcher
R1Hector Neris
2Tommy Hunter
3Pat Neshek
4Luis Garcia
5Adam Morgan
6Edubray Ramos
7Victor Arano
8Seranthony Dominguez
9Mark Leiter
10Jake Thompson