By PATRICK GORDON | Managing Editor
May 21 2014, 2:15pm EDT.

The Phillies placed Cliff Lee on the 15-day DL late Tuesday night with a mild strain in his flexor tendon in his left elbow.

Lee underwent an MRI on his elbow in Philadelphia on Tuesday and said he felt soreness on the inside portion of the elbow following Sunday's 8-3 win over the Reds. He first experienced an issue with the elbow following his April 16 complete game against Atlanta, but underwent treatment and it began to feel better. He threw a bit on Monday and felt pain after every throw, so an MRI was the next step.

"I was hoping it would be really minor," Lee said in Miami after Tuesday night's win. "I don't know if this is minor. It's definitely not a ligament. A Tommy John thing is not what it is, so I think that was good, but we basically knew that from the tests they did before that."

General manager Ruben Amaro Jr. believes the Phillies will be without Lee for three starts.

"We're going to be cautious with him, and there's no reason to try to push it," Amaro Jr. said. "Hopefully he's going to be ready by the time the DL's over."

Lee said he's not going to throw for seven days, hopefully allowing the tendon to relax and strengthen.

Neither Amaro Jr. or manager Ryne Sandberg were ready to name a replacement in the rotation.

"Cliff is a loss," Sandberg said. "Hopefully it was caught early enough with the mildness that it is. He's had some good outings up right to it. It just came on the day after [his Sunday start]."

- The Philadelphia Baseball Review is the top baseball news source in Philadelphia, providing news coverage and analysis of the 2014 Phillies and baseball in the Philadelphia region.

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