The Mets and Mariners have had "serious talks" about Cliff Lee

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Cliff Lee headshot Mariners.jpgThat report is from Matthew Cerrone of MetsBlog.  The sticking point: the Mariners want Jon Niese, but Omar is unwilling to trade him.

I think I have to side with Omar here.  Given that Lee is going to hit the market this winter, why not wait it out, be aggressive, and try to get him then, thereby giving the Mets a pretty spectacular rotation heading into 2011? By giving up Niese for him and then extending him you’re basically paying for him twice.

If the answer is that they wouldn’t be willing to pay what Lee would be asking for a long term deal, they shouldn’t be talking to the Mariners about him anyway. They should be sticking with younger, cheaper talent like, say, Jon Niese.

Marlins designate Derek Dietrich for assignment

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The Marlins designated utilityman Derek Dietrich for assignment, Clark Spencer of the Miami Herald reports. This comes amid a flurry of moves on Tuesday night as teams prepare their rosters ahead of the Rule 5 draft next month.

Dietrich, 29, is coming off another strong season in which he hit .265/.330/.421 with 16 home runs, 45 RBI, and 72 runs scored in 551 plate appearances. He played all over the diamond, spending most of his time in left field and at first base. Dietrich also played some second base, third base, and right field.

Dietrich is entering his third of four years of arbitration eligibility. He earned $2.9 million this past season and MLB Trade Rumors projects him to earn $4.8 million in 2019. Cutting Dietrich represents a bit more than 4 million in savings for the rebuilding and perennially small-market Marlins. Dietrich should draw some interest, so the Marlins could end up trading him rather soon.

Wonder how J.T. Realmuto, now the longest-tenured Marlin, is feeling right about now.