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Cliff Lee's elbow is still hurt

Cliff Lee, who we've talked about for quite some time as a possible trade target, is having elbow pain

Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports

Cliff Lee, the Philadelphia Phillies lefthanded starter who has been talked about as a potential trade target for the Rangers basically since he left Texas for Philly after the 2010 season, has been shut down by the Phillies with a sore left elbow.

That soreness also limited Lee to 13 starts last season, and made him virtually untradeable this past offseason because of the uncertainty surrounding the health of his arm.

Lee is due $25 million this season, and has a $27.5 million vesting option (he needs 200 IP this year and to end the season without an arm injury putting him on the d.l.) with a $12.5 million buyout for 2016.  Of course, no one is going to commit $37.5M for one year (with the possibility of it being $52.5M for two years) for a pitcher who may spend the year on the d.l.

Per the link above, the MRI on Lee showed swelling, and they are going to give him a few days to rest.  But given that this is an injury that limited him for much of 2014, and given that it is already giving him trouble this season, there are some huge red flags here, and it seems more likely Lee ends 2015 on the d.l. than with another team.