FOXSports.com senior baseball writer Ken Rosenthal quoted unnamed executives who believe Lee will be traded as soon as the next 7-10 days, following a blueprint used two years ago when the Cleveland Indians traded Lee's former teammate, CC Sabathia.
"All we want to do is go out and win baseball games," Mariners general manager Jack Zduriencik said Friday. "I can't prevent people from picking up the phone and making a phone call. I even talked to Cliff today, had a nice discussion with him about this. He's mature and understands the process, he's been through it before.
"What's important is that we try to win as many games as we can and see what happens. We've played well lately. Unfortunately the club ahead of us has played a little better. We play good and lose ground. There's a lot of season to be played. If somebody loses a key player here or there, you never know what happens."
The Indians were 13 1/2 games out of first place when they traded Sabathia to the Brewers on July 7, 2008. Seattle entered Saturday 14 games behind white-hot Texas.