Cliff Lee’s new teammates were so excited to get him, they gave the man responsible for the trade a clubhouse curtain call.
Looking for an ace to bolster their so-so rotation, the Philadelphia Phillies acquired Lee on Wednesday from Cleveland, marking the second straight year the Indians traded the reigning AL Cy Young Award winner.
When general manager Ruben Amaro Jr. walked through the locker room hours before the defending World Series champions played in Arizona, many Phillies greeted him with applause.
“One of our goals has been to add someone to our rotation that can be a difference-maker,” Amaro said in a conference call. “It’s important to show our guys on the field that we’re making the best effort to put the best team out there.”
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The NL East-leading Phillies gave Cleveland four minor league prospects for Lee and outfielder Ben Francisco. The left-handed Lee is 7-9 with a 3.14 ERA in 22 starts this season after going 22-3 with a 2.54 ERA last year.
“I’m going to miss all these guys here, but it’s an opportunity for me to help a team that’s in first place,” Lee said. “They’re the defending world champions. So as far as that goes, I’m excited.”
The Phillies sent Triple-A pitcher Carlos Carrasco, infielder Jason Donald and catcher Lou Marson along with Single-A pitcher Jason Knapp to Cleveland.
Giants land Sanchez
The San Francisco Giants acquired infielder Freddy Sanchez from the Pittsburgh Pirates and made it a convenient switch for the three-time All-Star.
The teams announced the trade right after the Giants beat Pittsburgh, 1-0 in 10 innings. Sanchez merely had to change clubhouses to join his new team, which is in the thick of the NL wild-card race.
He gave his hugs and handshakes and bid farewell on the visitor’s side, then walked some 100 yards to San Francisco’s locker room to pull on his new No. 28 jersey and a black Giants cap before being formally introduced.
San Francisco sent minor league pitcher Tim Alderson to the Pirates for the 31-year-old Sanchez, the 2006 NL batting champion.
Sanchez is hitting .296 with six home runs and 34 RBI. He was an All-Star in 2006, 2007 and this year.
Around the horn
The New York Mets’ game against the Colorado Rockies was postponed because of rain and will be made up as part of a day-night doubleheader today. … Minnesota Twins left-hander Francisco Liriano was scratched from Wednesday’s start with soreness and swelling in his left forearm. … Yankees starting pitcher Chien-Ming Wang has had season-ending arthroscopic surgery on his injured right shoulder. … Left-hander Rich Hill was placed on the 15-day disabled list by the Baltimore Orioles, who labeled his injury as “shoulder inflammation” even though the pitcher contends he’s had a torn labrum since the beginning of the season. … Atlanta Braves manager Bobby Cox extended his major league ejection record to 147 on Wednesday, getting tossed in the eighth inning for arguing balls and strikes in a game against Florida. … Houston Astros ace Roy Oswalt has received an injection to treat an irritated disk in his lower back and could have his next start pushed back. … Astros reliever Wesley Wright was diagnosed with dehydration after being rushed to the hospital following Houston’s 11-6 win over the Chicago Cubs. … Los Angeles Dodgers manager Joe Torre said that Jason Schmidt would remain in the starting rotation and pitch Friday at Atlanta. … The Texas Rangers recalled middle infielder Joaquin Arias from Triple-A Oklahoma City.