|Lee's hesitation prompts the Dodgers to seek other options for upgrading their offense. (US Presswire)|
The wait for Carlos Lee's approval had gone on long enough, so the Dodgers finally pulled the plug on the deal that would have sent the veteran slugger west to Los Angeles.
Sources say the Dodgers called off the deal earlier on Sunday. They were to send pitching prospect Garrett Gould to Houston for Lee in an attempt to bolster their offense, which has badly missed superstar Matt Kemp and Andre Ethier.
The deal was made Friday, and Lee was saying he was having trouble deciding. Perhaps the Dodgers took that as a hint. Lee is hitting .290 with five home runs, so he isn't exactly having a big power year, anyway.
The Dodgers are expected to continue to seek ways to upgrade their offense. First base and third base are two spots where they could use help.
There is no indication they have real interest in the Cubs' Alfonso Soriano, who is on the block. Not many great offensive options are available, but the Cubs have a few, including All-Star Bryan LaHair.
The Dodgers, major players with their new ownership team, are also expected to try to add a starting pitcher, and Ryan Dempster is a candidate for them once he comes off the disabled list.
The Astros have been trying to trade Lee since the winter but are hampered by his 14-team no-trade list which includes mostly major-market teams. He originally signed with the Astros partly because he has a cattle ranch near Houston, and has shown no desire to leave. He opted for the Astros over the Giants despite San Francisco offering more than the $100-million, six-year deal he signed in Houston. So he has never shown a great desire to play on the West Coast.
The Astros are telling teams they are willing to trade any of their players, though they'd have to be bowled over to consider trading emerging shortstop Jed Lowrie, who is close to untouchable.