Rangers Will Get Draft Picks If Lee Leaves

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    NEWSLETTERS

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    ARLINGTON, TX - JULY 22: Pitcher Cliff Lee #33 of the Texas Rangers throws against the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim on July 22, 2010 at Rangers Ballpark in Arlington, Texas. (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images) *** Local Caption *** Cliff Lee

    The Texas Rangers have offered salary arbitration to Cliff Lee, meaning the American League champions will be compensated with draft choices if the free-agent left-hander signs with another team.

    According to a news release from the Texas Rangers:

    All four ranked players are Type A free agents, meaning that, depending on the circumstances, the Rangers would be rewarded with at least a first round selection and a supplemental first round pick in the 2011 June draft if either Lee and/or Francisco were to decline the offer and sign with another major league club.

    The deadline for clubs to offer arbitration to ranked free agents in order to be eligible for compensation was at 11:00 p.m. CST tonight.  Lee and Francisco have until 11:00 CST on Tuesday, November 30 to decide whether to accept or decline the Rangers’ offer.

    Lee was a combined 12-9 with a 3.18 ERA for Seattle and Texas last season. He won three postseason games for the Rangers before two losses against San Francisco in the World Series.

    The Rangers also offered arbitration to reliever Frank Francisco, who missed the final month of the regular season and the postseason with a muscle strain in his right side.

    Texas decided against offering arbitration to catcher Bengie Molina and designated hitter Vladimir Guerrero, whose $9 million option wasn't exercised by the team.

    Texas also did not offer salary arbitration to three other unranked free agents: infielders Jorge Cantu and Cristian Guzman, and catcher Matt Treanor.

    More: Rangers Offer Salary Arbitration to Lee and Francisco