Yankees make official offer to free agent Cliff Lee

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Cliff Lee’s agent, Darek Braunecker, made an early exit from the Winter Meetings on Wednesday afternoon after speaking with a range of different clubs about his client.

He did not leave empty-handed.

According to Marc Carig of the Newark Star-Ledger, the Yankees made an official offer to the left-handed Lee on Wednesday and Mark Feinsand of the New York Daily News suspects that it’s worth about $140 million over six years.  That’s about $23.3 million per season.

The Rangers will probably counter within the next couple of days — maybe tomorrow — and other teams will have to decide if they’re willing to engage in a bidding war with the two front-running clubs.

Lee, 32, posted a sparkling 3.18 ERA and 1.00 WHIP over 28 starts in 2010, striking out 185 batters against just 18 walks.  Like most free agents in his position, the Arkanas-born southpaw is probably going to chase the richest and lengthiest contract that he can find.