Cliff Lee will listen to offers from Nationals, probably all teams

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It is officially hot stove season and, courtesy of MLB.com’s Bill Ladson, we officially have one of our first ridiculous hot stove items.

In September, Nationals GM Mike Rizzo expressed a desire to pick up a front-end starter this offseason.  Then on Thursday ESPN.com’s Rob Neyer wrote that the Nats are “a potential sleeper in the competition to land” free agent left-hander Cliff Lee.

Now comes the good part.  Or the juicy part.  Or whatever you want to call it.  Ladson heard from a baseball source this weekend that Lee is open to offers from the Nationals and “will listen to what Washington has to say.”  Shocking, right?

It should come as no surprise that Lee, this offseason’s marquee free agent, is going to listen to what any and every MLB team “has to say.” Of course he’s going to leave himself “open” to their offers.  He’s a free agent — free to sign with any club — and he is going to be seeking out the richest contract possible.

The Rangers and Yankees are believed to be the front-runners for his services and both clubs have the resources to get the job done.   Most national media members believe that the southpaw will wind up in pinstripes, but if the Nationals want to drive up his price, more power to ’em.  The Pirates might as well throw in a bid too.  And is that the Royals on Line 2?

Hyun-Jin Ryu to start Game 2 for the Dodgers

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Los Angeles Dodgers manager Dave Roberts said yesterday that Hyun-Jin Ryu will start Game 2 of the World Series. Walker Buehler will start Game 3.

Ryu, a lefty, was 7-3 with a 1.97 ERA in a 15-start regular season. He pitched seven scoreless innings in the NLDS against the Braves and made two starts in the NLCS against Milwaukee. The Dodgers won his first one there, in which he allowed two runs in four and a third. He took the loss in Game 6 after getting lit up for five runs on seven hits in three innings.

Buehler, who was 8-5 with a 2.62 ERA in the regular season, went dour and two-thirds and allowed just one run in the NLCS clincher against the Brewers on Saturday night.