Lee Homers, Makes Sure Kendrick Knows It
Cliff Lee touched home plate, looked toward the visitor’s bullpen 360 feet away, brushed his right hand with his left hand like a bank teller counting out cash and smiled.
It was not a home run celebration.
It was a message to Kyle Kendrick, who was sitting in the bullpen, to pay up. Lee and Kendrick are in a home run competition and Lee had just blasted his second homer of the season in the seventh inning of last night’s 2-1 victory over the Dodgers. Lee said he thought about Kendrick “pretty much instantly” when the ball sailed over the right-field wall.
“It’s just a friendly wager,” Lee said. “It’s a little side deal.”
So what are the stakes?
“I think we’re going to keep that between us,” he said. “We can call it dinner or whatever you want to call it.”
Shortly after Lee’s homer Roy Oswalt called the bullpen to send a message to Kendrick, although bullpen coach Mick Billmeyer had to hang up because he was trying to get Ryan Madson loose.
Kendrick played off his mounting deficit. He trails, 2-0.
“I don’t know what you’re talking about,” Kendrick said. “He owes me.”