Lee, in happier times
I wonder how Kristen feels about this?
The best pitcher in the National League pissed a modicum of excellence last night in a 3-2 win– seven innings, two earned runs, three hits, six strikeouts, one walk and a pile of passive aggressive comments aimed at the Phillies’ front office.
Cliff Lee may have found his Curt Schilling card. No, not the Ace– the other one. He’s not happy… he just wants to win: [Phillies.com]
But can this team win as it is currently constituted? The offense and bullpen each are among the worst in baseball.
“I can’t look at it any other way, besides I expect us to win and catch up with the Braves and get into the postseason,” Lee said. “That’s the only way you can look at it.”
Does he want to stay if the team doesn’t turn things around?
“I definitely want to win,” he said. “There’s no doubt about that.”
But if it doesn’t turn around?
“I want to win,” he repeated. “I don’t know how else to say it besides that. I want to win.”
My love just told me (s)he wants an open relationship. I don’t know how to take this. YES! Let’s explore, baby! Graze on some of that strange. Or: No… don’t you remember the good times? The walks in the park where we would laugh? That trip to New York in 2009? The time you gave up one run in five starts and peed on me and we filmed it?!
This is the first time, just about ever, that Lee has said anything other than I fucking love Philadelphia and never want to (wanted to) leave there. The circumstances, and the subject, are different, but you can’t help thinking that the stories about Cliff are starting to sound like the ones about Schilling in 2000. Just compare these articles from Jim Salisbury, then with the Inquirer, now with CSN Philly and the NBC family of corporate conglomerate sports networks and other assets.
The ultimate call in this drama belongs to Phillies general manager Ed Wade, who is quick to remind people that his vocal, 33-year-old ace has a ”no-trade clause,” not a ”trade-me clause.”
So what’s going to happen? Should the Phillies deal Schilling? Should they hang on to him?
There is no right answer, of course. But the topic is worth mulling as the July 31 trading deadline nears.
Why the Phils should deal Schilling: He will be 34 in November. He has had two shoulder operations. He could probably pitch, and pitch well, into his late 30s, but there’s no denying that he has carried a heavy load the last four years, and the reduced velocity on his fastball just might be a sign that it’s catching up with him.
Lee has a limited no-trade clause in which he can block deals to 20 teams, but no-trade clauses can be negotiated away. With his 35th birthday approaching, it’s difficult to imagine Lee blocking a deal that would send him to a team with a chance of winning a World Series.
But can Lee, hungry to win and tired of losing, wait that long?
Jim is, apparently, a fan of asking rhetorical questions. And Ed Wade was, apparently, always a douche.
Schilling, July, 2000:
Why the Phils should not deal Schilling: No. 1 starting pitchers are difficult to find. Look at the Indians, who desperately tried to get one for years and had to finally overpay aging Chuck Finley. The Phils have an excellent No. 1, and he’s a great bargain at $6.5 million next season. What happens if the Phils suddenly come together next season? Who’s going to be the ace? And where are the Phils going to get one that cheaply?
Lee, June, 2013:
That is if the Phillies decide to move him. There is a school of thought that they will hang on to him, cross their fingers for a second-half run and try to get it together with Lee and Cole Hamels at the top of the rotation next season.
Schilling, of course, was traded and went on to win three World Series in the decade.
Why does it feel like we’re back to Dark Ages?