Really? Let's just say the assertion by SI.com's Jon Heyman that free-agent pitcher Cliff Lee has a pair of seven-year contract offers in hand has been met by one resounding feeling -- skepticism.
I would have to share that feeling. Who, exactly, would those two teams be? Who, besides the New York Yankees and Texas Rangers are serious bidders for Lee's services? Who has the financial ability to toss a seven-year offer on the table for a guy who will be 39 when that theoretical contract would expire?
On top of those questions, how can there be two seven-year offers for Lee when his agent, Darek Braunecker, has nto allowed the Yankees or Rangers -- the real bidders -- to make an offer for his client yet?
"I'm willing to get serious," said Yankee GM Brian Cashman. "As a free agent, they dictate the pace. We have to go the dance step. That's how it is."
So, again you have to wonder where Heyman's intel is coming from and how reliable it is. It seems, though, that an offer from the Yankees to Lee is forthcoming as soon as Cashman gets the green light from Braunecker.
"I know what we are willing to do and how far we are willing to go," Cashman said of the Lee contract. "We would love to add Cliff Lee to the Yankee rotation. He knows that. I have a great working relationship with the agent. The player has good ties to some of the players on the team. But, at the end of the day, it is business. It is all business."
You can count on that offer being for a large pile of Steinbrenner cash. Just don't count on it being for seven years.