Results for tag: Cliff Lee
Posted by: Jack Curry on Feb 15, 2011 at 04:24:32 PM

A few months after CC Sabathia joined the Yankees for the 2009 season, I asked him why he decided to live in Bergen County, N.J. Sabathia explained what he liked about the area and how he liked being close to Yankee Stadium, but he quickly turned from the interviewee to the interviewer. He asked me which local high schools had the best athletic programs for boys.

At the time, CC’s son, Little CC, was five years old and in kindergarten. That didn’t stop CC from gazing several years into the future and wondering which New Jersey high school might someday be the best fit for the next Carsten Charles Sabathia. CC knew a few tidbits about some schools, showing that he had already done a bit of research for Little CC’s freshman year in 2017.

When Sabathia reported to Spring

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Posted by: Jack Curry on Dec 14, 2010 at 01:00:08 AM

As Monday morning became Monday afternoon and then Monday night, the Yankees had an uncomfortable feeling about their negotiations with Cliff Lee. The Yankees had offered the free-agent pitcher a contract that could have been worth about $150 million across seven years last Friday and were waiting for a response. Some Yankees executives were concerned about a mystery team that had joined them and the Rangers in pursuing Lee. 

Before Monday night turned into Tuesday morning, the Yankees discovered that their concerns about a third team wooing Lee were valid. Lee spurned the Yankees and the Rangers to sign a five-year deal with the Phillies for a reported $120 million. Lee bypassed millions from the Yankees to return to the Phillies, a team he helped power to the World Series in 2009.

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Posted by: Jack Curry on Dec 9, 2010 at 06:47:27 PM

LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. –- During Brian Cashman’s conversation with Hal Steinbrenner on Thursday morning, Cashman told Steinbrenner that the Yankees were about to add a left-handed starter. Did that mean the team had finally signed Cliff Lee? Not yet. Cashman was referring to Robert Fish, the 22-year-old lefty the Yankees selected in the Rule 5 draft later that day.

That was Cashman’s attempt at being playful and, ever so briefly, taking a respite from the questions about Lee. What Cashman didn’t disclose is how he surely talked to Steinbrenner about increasing the team’s offer to Lee to seven years, a move that came hours after the Red Sox agreed to a seven-year, $142 million contract with Carl Crawford. It is believed the Yankees are willing to pay Lee $161

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Posted by: Jack Curry on Dec 8, 2010 at 08:10:55 PM

LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. – The Yankees intensified their pursuit of Cliff Lee on Wednesday by making a lucrative offer to the free agent pitcher. General Manager Brian Cashman disclosed that he had made the offer, but he wouldn’t be specific about it. The Yankees probably offered Lee a six-year deal for about $140 million.

Soon after Darek Braunecker received the offer, he left the Winter Meetings and returned to Arkansas to meet with Lee. Was Braunecker’s departure a promising sign for the Yankees? The Yankees hope so. Cashman had been frustrated by the sluggish pace of the negotiations with Braunecker. Now Cashman and the Yankees will wait to hear from Lee.

“This,” Cashman said, “is someone who is worth the wait.”

Even though Braunecker officially

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Posted by: Jack Curry on Dec 7, 2010 at 11:42:50 AM

LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. – General manager Brian Cashman fired a football to Billy Eppler, his assistant, in the Yankees’ hotel suite on Monday. Eppler whipped it back as the two men shattered the rules about playing indoors with a ball and acted like kids for a few minutes. It was a brief respite from their serious offseason pursuit of a specific left-handed thrower.

A few feet from where Cashman and Eppler imitated Drew Brees, the Yankees had laptops and piles of paper resting on a long table. Somewhere in that mix, there was undoubtedly information about Cliff Lee, not that the Yankees needed any updated information on a superb pitcher they are chasing.

The Yankees have really been chasing Lee since July, when they thought they had acquired him from the Seattle Mariners. Now

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Posted by: Jack Curry on Oct 28, 2010 at 09:28:31 AM

SAN FRANCISCO -- The Yankees wanted to be the team that solved Cliff Lee in a postseason game, wanted to be the team that made the robot of a pitcher look mortal. They had an approach for the American League Championship Series: profit from Lee's mistakes. Lee barely made any so the plan fizzled.

But Lee was not as precise against the San Francisco Giants in Game 1 of the World Series on Wednesday night. He was human. He made mistakes. The Giants had a plan, too, a plan that involved being aggressive at the right time. It worked as the Giants rumbled to an 11-7 victory over Lee and the Texas Rangers. Somewhere, the Yankees had to be wondering why they were unable to do that to Lee.

Before the Yankees opposed Lee, Kevin Long, their batting coach, theorized that a pitcher like Lee would make

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Posted by: Jack Curry on Oct 27, 2010 at 11:49:33 AM

SAN FRANCISCO –- The Yankees wanted to face Cliff Lee one last time in 2010. Seeing Lee would have meant there would be a Game 7 against the Texas Rangers in the American League Championship Series. Seeing Lee would have meant the Yankees were one conquest away from the World Series.

Of course, the Yankees never faced Lee again. The Yankees sputtered in Game 6 and saw their season disappear. Looking more fatigued than ferocious against the Rangers, the Yankees kept getting smacked and jabbed by the feistier team. Lee’s services weren’t needed a second time in the series.   

Now the Yankees will have a chance to see Lee’s next postseason start from a distance, if they watch it at all. The Yankees can study Lee in Game 1 of the World Series against Tim Lincecum

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Posted by: Jack Curry on Oct 18, 2010 at 01:50:36 PM

Marcus Thames has faced Cliff Lee 36 times in his career. By Sunday afternoon, Thames had analyzed the videotape of every one of those at-bats, searching for some clues about how to hit the supposedly unhittable postseason pitcher.

Thames studied the pitches he missed, the pitches he fouled off and the pitches he didn’t swing at, rewinding and fast-forwarding through his dates with Lee. Eventually, Thames discovered a pattern, a sliver of information that he hopes will help him in Game 3 of the American League Championship Series on Monday night.

“In every at-bat I had, I usually had one pitch to hit,” Thames said. “Even in the at-bats where I struck out against him, I had a pitch and missed it. You can’t miss that pitch.”

Thames has seven hits, including

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Posted by: Jack Curry on Oct 13, 2010 at 07:15:15 PM

One day after Cliff Lee was traded from the Seattle Mariners to the Texas Rangers, not the expectant Yankees, Brian Cashman took his son, Teddy, to the circus. A trip to see the clowns, the lions and the trapeze artists had been planned, but it came at an opportune time. After believing the Yankees had snagged Lee and then learning he was going elsewhere, Cashman needed a diversion.

Cashman wanted Lee so desperately that he was willing to trade Jesus Montero, the Yankees’ premier prospect and a player that he thinks will eventually blast 40 homers in the Major Leagues. But the general manager thought Lee would be a season-changing addition, the type of pitcher who could help catapult the Yankees to a second straight championship. Instead, Lee went to the Rangers.

“When he

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