The Phillies may have gotten the news this morning that they have been waiting to hear, but every other team dreads. The ace of the Texas Rangers, Yu Darvish, suffered a sprained UCL in his first spring game this past Thursday against the Royals. He now faces what will be his eventual destiny: Tommy John Surgery. A sprained UCL can be healed with many months of rest, but the long-term solution, especially for someone like Darvish who has his future ahead of him, is surgery.
So how does this affect the Phillies? They just happen to have two starting pitchers that would be a quick fix for a team in this exact situation. Cliff Lee is a perfect fit for the Rangers. He’s familiar with the organization having pitched there during the latter half of the 2010 season and has mentioned in the past being open to accepting a trade back to Texas. Plus for the first time in nearly a year, Cliff Lee is healthy and feeling good. On Thursday, Lee pitched two scoreless Grapefruit League innings against the Houston Astros, his first action since last July 31.
It’s time to strike while the iron is hot. The Rangers have a need and Ruben has a solution for them. If there is an opportunity to unload multiple pieces in Lee and catcher Carlos Ruiz, the Phillies should take advantage of the situation. The Rangers are littered with prospects that could benefit their rebuilding efforts. Catcher Jorge Alfaro is a must ask. The 21-year old and consensus top 75 prospect boasts a strong, powerful bat and fills a void in their own system. There’s a deal to be made. It’s time for Amaro to put on his GM hat and get a deal done.