Astros, Dodgers Discussing Carlos Lee; Jed Lowrie Off the Table

HOUSTON, TX - JUNE 27: Carlos Lee #45 of the Houston Astros flies out to center fielder Carlos Quentin #18 of the San Diego Padres in the seventh inning at Minute Maid Park on June 27, 2012 in Houston, Texas. Houston wins 1-0 on a complete game by Lucas Harrell. (Photo by Bob Levey/Getty Images)

The Houston Astros are in discussions to send first baseman Carlos Lee to the Los Angeles Dodgers for pitching prospects, reports Scott Miller of CBS Sports.

Originally reported by Buster Olney of ESPN as talks to acquire shortstop Jed Lowrie, the discussion has moved away from Lowrie to Lee, who is in the final year of six-year deal and still owed almost $9 million.

Top prospect Zach Lee’s named was floated around when Jed Lowrie was involved, but Ken Rosenthal and Jon Morosi of FOX Sports speculate that the Astros will likely receive a mid-level pitching prospect like Garrett Gould in return for the aging El Caballo.

The Dodgers have received little to no production from incumbent first baseman James Loney. who is hitting just .240/.307/.327 with two home runs on the season. Lee, 36, is hitting .291/.344/.410 with five home runs in 60 games for the Astros this year.

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What's the best return Houston can get for Lee?

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Lee’s nearly $9 million price tag is steep, but LA needs all the offensive help they can get. The club is ranked 11th in runs scored in the National League and were embarrassingly shutout on three consecutive days by their rival San Francisco Giants earlier this week.

In order to complete a deal, Lee would have to waive his no-trade clause, which explicitly forbids a trade to the Dodgers, among others. Olney tweets that Lee is a 50-50 shot to waive his clause for the Dodgers.

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