New York Yankees Would Be Wise to Not Pursue Cliff Lee

By Arthur Dowell
Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports
Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

The New York Yankees are in dire need of starting pitching, but they should stay away from talks with the Philadelphia Phillies on ace Cliff Lee.

It is weird to say that since the pitcher is known for going deep into the season and throwing well when the pressure is at its highest in October. It just so happens that he made the Yankees’ lineup look silly on more than one occasion in the playoffs. In 2009, he was the winning pitcher in both of the Phillies’ World Series games. In 2010, when pitching for the Texas Rangers, he looked as if he never lost a beat.

Though it would make sense to see a big-name pitcher who can win big games play for a successful franchise whose goal is nothing less than a World Series championship, it would not be good. His wife came out years ago and said she hates Yankees fans when they started spitting on her during one of the games. That was a major factor in Lee turning down a contract for the Yankees in 2011 when he signed back with the Phillies.

Lee is known for staying healthy, but right now, he is on the DL and on track to return in the near future. If the injury were to linger and the team acquired him only to see him need more time on the DL, that would be a lot of money the Yankees are spending on injured pitchers. The list includes Ivan Nova, Michael Pineda and Lee’s former teammate, C.C. Sabathia. None of them are expected to be back before August.

If the Phillies offer Lee on the trade market, it would make a lot of sense for many teams. One of the teams that should not be considering him is the Yankees. They cannot risk another injury and they most definitely cannot risk a big-name player not being comfortable in New York and not pitching well. The fans will not hesitate to let that be known.

Arthur Dowell is a Yankees writer for Follow him on Twitter @a24dowell, “like” him on Facebookor add him to your network on Google.

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