Last night Omar Minaya and Indians general manager, Mark Shapiro, had dinner together. This is only speculation, but Newsday writer, Ken Davidoff, believed that maybe they were discussing left-hand pitcher Cliff Lee. Lee was coming off of two impressive seasons going into this year, but had a disastrous season that landed him back in AAA in 2007. Minaya already has a history with Cliff Lee that goes back to his days as the Expos’ GM.
I don’t think Lee is someone that Omar would be targeting at this stage of the game… The way I see it, Cliff Lee is no better than any of the pitchers the Mets have already, and would hardly classify as an improvement.
As long as we’re speculating, maybe Minaya has his eyes on C.C. Sabathia, a solid top of the rotation guy that could slot in right behind Pedro Martinez in 2008, and take over as the ace of the team in 2009 and beyond.
The Indians just picked up the option on Paul Byrd and given that Sabathia is in the final year of his contract which pays $9 million dollars, it’s most likely a given that the Indians will likely lose him at the end of next season when he becomes a free agent.
Sabathia is a solid left handed power pitcher who logged 241 innings pitched last season with an ERA of 3.21 and 209 strikeouts. On the Mets, he would immediately become the teams best pitcher, and at 27-years old, he still may have his best years in front of him.
Omar Minaya made a promise that he will address the Mets pitching this off season. Even yesterday he said that upgrading the starting pitching was his top priority. Given those words, I doubt very much that there was much discussion about a pitcher like Cliff Lee, and I would bet anything that Sabathia’s name came up more times than Lee’s did.