Mandatory Credit: Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports

Update: Cliff Lee won't be back until after All-Stark break

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Update 7/7 8:55 PM EST: Amaro told CSN Philly’s Jim Salisbury that Lee isn’t likely to return until after the All-Star break.

General manager Ruben Amaro Jr. said Lee would pitch Wednesday for Single A Clearwater. Amaro said Lee would probably require one more minor-league rehab start after that, likely five days later. The all-star break arrives after Sunday’s games. That means Lee could not pitch in the majors until the first weekend after the all-star break when the Phillies are in Atlanta.

Update 7/6 7:37 PM EST: 6 ABC’s Jeff Skversky passed along these two details moments ago. For whatever reason, details on how Lee will proceed from here are scarce.

 

Original Article

For the first time since mid-May, Phillies’ lefty Cliff Lee threw pitches in a non-simulated game today, in a rehab-stint with the Single-A Clearwater Threshers. Unfortunately for all parties involved, Lee’s start didn’t get past the “few pitches” stage.

In two innings, the 35 year-old lefty only needed 24 pitches to strike out two, and turn in a scoreless performance. After the visitor’s half of the third-inning, the game was put in a rain-delay due do inclement weather, where it currently remains. In the midst of the delay, Lee has actually thrown more pitches in the bullpen, taken off his uniform and talked to some members of the press (still waiting on quotes), meaning that he won’t be returning today.

While the performance was a positive sign, it’s length likely will prevent Lee from returning to the big-league club this week. One would think that Lee will need more than a 24-pitch rehab stint before returning to the MLB. Whether the next performance comes at the Single-A level or somewhere else in the organization, remains to be seen.

As for Lee’s trade value, this obviously doesn’t help. While the Phillies might have kept Lee in the minors for one more start regardless of today’s outcome, the chance that he could have returned to the MLB later this week and quickly tried to recover his dwindling trade-value didn’t seem impossible. Today’s events mean that, barring any setbacks, Lee will only make two to three starts prior to the July 31st trade deadline, making it even less likely that he will be moved.

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Tags: Cliff Lee Philadelphia Phillies

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