The Philadelphia Phillies suffered a big blow on July 31st when they faced the Washington Nationals. On an already disappointing trade deadline day, the Phillies lost their star player Cliff Lee. Lee had been previously injured with an elbow injury for two months from late May to mid-July. After struggling in two starts in his return from the dialed list, Lee walked off the mound in the third inning with discomfort in the same elbow. Eventually found out it was a recurrence of the flexor-pronator tendon strain he had before. Considering the fact that he spent two months on the DL from that injury, many fans were skeptical of a return from the left-hander. Lee even said he would “probably” miss the entire season the day after his start. Well, the signs that Lee will not return keep on coming.
Today, it was reported that Lee was heading home to rest his injury according to Todd Zolecki and Austin Laymance of MLB.com. The sight of his locker being completely cleaned out also supports this theory. This not only hurts the Phillies currently, but also in the future. Lee was expected to be a big trade option in August after proving he was not injured. Obviously he was still injured, but if he did not re-injure himself and regained his form then he could have been pursued by a couple of contending teams. When healthy Lee is one of the better pitchers in the game. Before his first injury, he was cruising through his first 10 starts. Through those starts he had a 3.18 ERA through 68 innings, and had 61 strikeouts with 9 walks. Throughout his career
Lee is assumed to be replaced by David Buchanan for the rest of the season, as he was called up to make a start today. He is 6-5 and has a 4.39 ERA through 11 starts, and pitched 6.1 innings of 3 run ball tonight.