Cleveland Indians: 3 storylines to follow during the 2020 season

Cleveland Indians spring training (Photo by Norm Hall/Getty Images)
Cleveland Indians spring training (Photo by Norm Hall/Getty Images) /
2 of 4
Cleveland Indians
Cleveland Indians Francisco Lindor (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images) /

Will Francisco Lindor be traded?

Ever since it was revealed that Francisco Lindor wanted stupid-money in free agency, it’s become clear the team won’t re-sign him. Beyond that, it’s clear that Lindor doesn’t want to re-sign here. The multi-time All-Star has apparently cut off ties with the club throughout the offseason as the team continued to try and offer him deal after deal to get him to stay. Lindor apparently has declined all calls from the front office according to league sources.

Now Lindor has two years left on his deal and teams may or may not want to take a gamble on him. Considering how long, and how few options guys like Bryce Harper and Manny Machado really had, it seems odd that Lindor would be so cavalier in his desire to hit the open market at the price he’s rumored to want. Teams like the Yankees and Red Sox aren’t putting up that kind of money anymore to sign free agents.

Especially not the Red Sox, who just traded franchise star Mookie Betts this past offseason due to the enormity of his contract demands. So the rest of the time Lindor is in Cleveland will be filled with “do we trade him or not?”

The other problem with trading Lindor is the idea of value. It comes down to two trains of thought. 1. Get whatever we can for him.

2. Use his skills to help us win for as long as we have him.

In one idea, you get the best deal you can and hope the rest of the team is good enough without him (it should be) to keep winning. After all, offense wins games, but pitching wins championships. The Nationals let their “best” hitter go and they won it all last year. Who says the Indians couldn’t do the same thing.

On the other hand, keeping Lindor and letting him walk is a sign that the team is committing to the fans to give the club the best chance of winning in the short term. Keywords, short term. By trading Lindor the team can get back assets that can help extend the window indefinitely if used correctly.