Cliff Lee has been traded four times, including three moves in the past 12 months, so with free agency around the corner he naturally wants to negotiate a no-trade clause into his next contract.
I’m going to do everything I can to have that in there. I want to have some control of my life.
Lee went from Cleveland to Philadelphia on July 29 of last year, moved from Philadelphia to Seattle on December 16, and was shipped from Seattle to Texas last week.
In all, he’s been traded for the following players in the past 350 or so days: Justin Smoak, Blake Beavan, Josh Lueke, Matthew Lawson, Phillippe Aumont, J.C. Ramirez, Tyson Gillies, Jason Knapp, Carlos Carrasco, Jason Donald, Lou Marson.
What’s amazing is that none of those trades were the biggest deal Lee has been involved in, because back when he was a minor leaguer in the Expos’ farm system Montreal traded him to Cleveland along with Grady Sizemore, Brandon Phillips, and Lee Stevens for Bartolo Colon.
So yeah, it’s tough to blame Lee for wanting to know he’ll be staying in one place for a while after this season.
Here are the Rangers and Blue Jays lineups for Game 1 of the ALDS in Toronto:
CF Delino DeShields
RF Shin-Soo Choo
3B Adrian Beltre
DH Prince Fielder
1B Mike Napoli
LF Josh Hamilton
SS Elvis Andrus
2B Rougned Odor
C Robinson Chirinos
SP Yovani Gallardo
With left-hander David Price on the mound for Toronto the Rangers are going with Mike Napoli at first base over Mitch Moreland. Beyond that it’s a pretty standard lineup for Texas, or at least standard for what manager Jeff Banister used down the stretch once Josh Hamilton was healthy enough to play left field.
LF Ben Revere
3B Josh Donaldson
RF Jose Bautista
DH Edwin Encarnacion
SS Troy Tulowitzki
1B Justin Smoak
C Russell Martin
2B Ryan Goins
CF Kevin Pillar
SP David Price
After returning from the disabled list for the final weekend of the regular season Troy Tulowitzki is in the lineup and batting fifth. That allows Ryan Goins to play second base in place of the injured Devon Travis. Justin Smoak gets the nod over Chris Colabello at first base against a right-hander.
Houston made one unexpected change to the roster for the ALDS, leaving off veteran reliever Chad Qualls.
Qualls warmed up but never appeared in the Wild Card game win over the Yankees and during the regular season the 36-year-old right-hander logged 49 innings with a 4.38 ERA and 46/9 K/BB ratio. Qualls was on the Astros’ last playoff team in 2005.
Utility man Jonathan Villar has been bumped off the roster in favor of outfielder Preston Tucker, as the Astros opted for a good left-handed bat off the bench versus the Royals rather than Villar’s speed.