Christian Friedrich's path to the Rockies' rotation reads more like Rand McNally than Dave McNally.

He began his offseason in Illinois, headed to Palm Coast, Fla., then found himself in Arkansas working with one of baseball's premier starters.

On the advice of his agents, Mark Rodgers and Derek Braunecker, Friedrich met with Phillies ace Cliff Lee.

Those lessons come full circle Friday night as Friedrich pitches against Lee when the Rockies begin the second half of the season at Coors Field.