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Rumor Mill: Cliff Lee

Despite their offensive woes, the rumors that are flying around the Cardinals continue to focus on the team searching for additional starting pitching help.

According to Fox Sports, the Birds had a scout at the Sunday game between the Mariners and Tigers, presumably to watch Cliff Lee pitch.

If that's the reason the Cardinals scout was there, he didn't leave disappointed. Lee struck out eleven and walked one as he scattered nine hits over eight innings pitched. He allowed only one earned run.

The persistent rumors about the Cardinals looking at Lee and Dan Haren makes me worry that the team knows something we don't about the condition of one of their current rotation members. Is Brad Penny hurt worse than we know? Why is it taking him two months to come back from a pulled lat that was originally going to cost him one or two starts? And what's up with Chris Carpenter who was terrible last time out. His control has been a problem all season -- even though he has managed to get results the majority of the time. And what about his surly disposition? He's been a bit of a prickly pear this year to say the least. Is the struggling in ways the fans don't know about?

According to Fox and ESPN reports, the Mariners want a "major league ready" pitcher in exchange for Lee. I wonder if they think Allen Craig fits that description because, basically, that's what the Birds have to offer from their minor league system.

The Yankees and the Dodgers also had scouts at the game, according to Fox reports.