According to the New York Post’s Joel Sherman, the Mariners have agreed to deal ace pitcher Cliff Lee and reliever Mark Lowe to the Texas Rangers for first baseman Justin Smoak and minor leaguers Blake Beavan, Josh Lueke and Matthew Lawson.
Seattle also will send $2.5 million to help the Rangers pay the $4 million still owed to Lee.
Lee confirmed the trade in a text to ESPN The Magazine’s Amy K. Nelson.
“Just heard from [Mariners general manager Jack Zduriencik],” Lee texted. “It’s official. From last [place] to first.”
Lee appeared destined to land in the Bronx. The Yankees were ready to part with top catching prospect Jesus Montero, minor league second baseman David Adams and a young prospect, but the Mariners became leary of Adams’ health and walked away, leaving New York empty-handed.
According to Fox Sports’ Ken Rosenthal, the Yankees are livid over losing Lee to Texas.
Lee (8-3, 2.34) is expected to start for the Rangers on Saturday in Arlington against the Orioles.