The Indians traded Cliff Lee in 2009, a year after he took home the American League Cy Young Award. On Wednesday night, the left-hander will return to face his former club as his Phillies close a two-game Interleague series at Progressive Field.
Lee, who will oppose Trevor Bauer, came up with the Indians in 2002 and pitched in 182 games for them over eight seasons. He said on Tuesday that it felt good to be back.
"Really doesn't seem like it's been as long as it has. It's been since '09," Lee said. "Doesn't feel that long, but yeah, good to be back and see some familiar faces. I stopped by and talked to the trainers over there and [home clubhouse and equipment manager] Tony Amato and some of the guys behind the scenes who were a huge part of my career. It was nice to see them and reminisce about some old times and just catch up a little bit. I've only been here maybe an hour or so but it's been good so far."
Since his trade to the Phillies, Lee (2-1, 3.03 ERA) has moved to the Mariners, Rangers and back to Philadelphia. In the meantime, his original club has seen significant turnover, leaving few former teammates to face off against.
"It's gonna be interesting. It's gonna be neat," Lee said. "But I don't try to get too caught up in it. I'm just gonna try to go out there and focus on each pitch, each hitter and put up as many zeros as I can."
Lee will be trying to get the Phillies a split in the short series following Tuesday's 14-2 drubbing, while Bauer can lead the Indians to their fourth straight victory, which would be a season high.
The rookie right-hander was recalled from Triple-A Columbus to make the spot start after going 1-0 with a 2.50 ERA in four outings there. He posted a 24-to-6 strikeout-to-walk ratio but also made it through six innings only once.
Bauer, whom the Indians acquired from the D-backs last offseason, made his only start for Cleveland on April 6 at Tampa Bay. He gave up three runs on only two hits in five innings, walking seven and throwing 105 pitches.
"I think he's got a chance to be really good," catcher Lou Marson said afterward. "He just needs to figure out something where he can get his fastball down in the zone. I don't know if it's something with his mechanics. But I think he's got a chance to be very good. He got through it."
Phillies: Delmon's debut
• The Phillies activated outfielder Delmon Young from the disabled list before Tuesday's game and had him batting fifth as the designated hitter in the American League ballpark. The club signed Young in January, but he had yet to play while recovering from offseason microfracture surgery on his right ankle.
Young, who hit 18 home runs for the Tigers last season, went deep in his first Phillies at-bat with a second-inning solo shot off Zach McAllister. He finished 2-for-3 and was hit by a pitch.
• Young returns to a Phillies club that has received very little offense from its outfield. Entering Tuesday, Philadelphia outfielders ranked 28th in the Majors in average (.211), 29th in OPS (.602), tied for 21st in home runs (six) and tied for 27th in RBIs (24). Domonic Brown, John Mayberry Jr. and Ben Revere combined to go 1-for-9 on Tuesday.
Indians: Resting Swisher's arm
• Nick Swisher was out of the lineup on Tuesday due to soreness in his left shoulder, and manager Terry Francona said the veteran could miss Wednesday's game as well, ahead of Thursday's off-day.
"His left shoulder has been nagging at him a little bit," Francona said. "We've been playing the heck out of him. I told him I'd give him tonight off. ... It wouldn't be a shocker if he doesn't play [Wednesday], either."
Francona said Swisher's frequent shifting between first base and right field probably has led to the soreness.
• Shortstop Asdrubal Cabrera has a nine-game hitting streak, during which he is batting 13-for-33 (.394) with three doubles, a triple and seven RBIs.
• Left-hander Nick Hagadone was optioned to Columbus to make a roster space for Bauer. Hagadone had no record and a 2.45 ERA in eight relief outings for Cleveland.
• Outside of one rough start against the Cardinals, Lee has a 25-to-2 strikeout-to-walk ratio this season.
• The Indians have matched their 2012 high by scoring at least nine runs in three straight games. The last time they did so in four straight was from Aug. 18-22, 2000.
Andrew Simon is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.