Shocked Lee wanted to finish career in Philly

Pitcher Cliff Lee wanted to stay in Philadelphia.

The Phillies’ postseason star said he proposed a counteroffer on a contract extension Wednesday — the day he was traded to Seattle in a four-team deal that sent pitcher Roy Halladay to the Phillies.

Speaking by telephone while on vacation in Puerto Rico, the 2008 American League Cy Young Award winner said he had “disbelief and shock” over the trade. The 31-year-old left-hander said he loved pitching for the Phillies and wanted to finish his career in Philadelphia.

He said he’s “disappointed” but can’t blame the Phillies for preferring Halladay. Lee said he will make the best of his situation in Seattle and likes the moves the Mariners are making.

Also: Alex Rodriguez is all set to start his winter workouts.

The New York Yankees star third baseman found out this week that his surgically repaired right hip is holding up fine.

Rodriguez missed the first month of the season after Dr. Marc Philippon operated on him. The doctor recently examined Rodriguez and told him that no additional surgery was needed for the foreseeable future.

Third baseman Garrett Atkins and reliever Mike Gonzalez have reached preliminary agreements with the Baltimore Orioles.

The New York Mets agreed to a $3 million, two-year contract with Japanese reliever Ryota Igarashi.

The Dodgers reached a preliminary agreement with free-agent infielder Jamey Carroll on a $3.85 million, two-year contract.


Patrick’s NASCAR debut will be in California

Danica Patrick will ease her way into NASCAR by skipping the Nationwide Series opener at Daytona International Speedway in favor of a less-stressful debut one week later in California.

The IndyCar star is still working on piecing together a 13-race schedule for JR Motorsports in NASCAR’s second-tier series, but she announced Thursday she has marked the Feb. 20 race at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana for her debut.

JR Motorsports also will field a car for Patrick in the Feb. 27 race at Las Vegas.


Knight: College hoops, Calipari lack integrity

Bobby Knight said integrity is lacking in college basketball and cited Kentucky coach John Calipari as an example.

During a fundraiser for the Indiana Basketball Hall of Fame, Knight said he doesn’t understand why Calipari is still coaching.

“We’ve gotten into this situation where integrity is really lacking, and that’s why I’m glad I’m not coaching,” he said. “You see we’ve got a coach at Kentucky who put two schools on probation and he’s still coaching. I really don’t understand that.”

Both of Calipari’s former schools were sanctioned by the NCAA for violations committed during his tenure.

Also: Penn State is one win from setting another volleyball record, earning the chance for a third straight national title by beating Hawaii, 23-25, 25-18, 25-15, 25-18.

The Nittany Lions (37-0) overcome a sluggish start and dropped only their sixth set of the season before extending their record winning streak to 101 matches. It was also coach Russ Rose’s 1,000th victory.

Penn State will face Texas on Saturday. The Longhorns swept Minnesota 25-19, 25-20, 25-15 in the other semifinal.

The NCAA is accusing Arizona State of failing to control its baseball program.

The Arizona Republic reported that the university last month received a notice of the allegations. The case is not expected to be heard by the NCAA infractions committee until next summer.

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