Cleveland Indians SS Francisco Lindor isn’t interested in being traded to the Mets or. Yankees.
Fans of the Cleveland Indians are preparing for a grim offseason, as the Tribe’s front office makes payroll cuts to combat the financial losses caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.
The cutbacks have been talked about for months, but things got a little more real four days after the Tribe played their last game, with Cleveland.com’s Terry Pluto analyzing the future of Francisco Lindor.
While the Indians chances to win are better with the four-time All-Star, Pluto wrote the Indians “Will trade Lindor,” because his arbitration number will likely be for more than $20 million.
The long-time columnist also added this about potential landing spots for the three-time Gold Glove winner, with some interesting insight into how the New York Yankees and Mets factor into a potential deal.
“I’ve heard he’s not interested in the New York teams. Once source told me Lindor would be open to West Coast teams (the Dodgers rumors) or perhaps a surprise team such as Toronto.”
Of course, Lindor has no say to where he’ll be traded, as the Indians’ front office will move him for what they deem to be the best offer available.
Toronto is an interesting team, because they’re led by the man who drafted Lindor back in 2011–Mark Shapiro. They’ve got young talent that made the postseason and would benefit from having a veteran such as Lindor playing up the middle.
Some are wondering if the pressure of a new contract may have impacted what was a less than Lindor-esque 2020 campaign. He hit .258 (.750 OPS) with eight home runs and 27 RBIs. Over 162 games, those numbers were projected to hit 21 homers and 75 RBIs.
If the pressure of his future was weighing on Lindor, only he knows at this point. Pluto wrote that some within the organization thought he was more distant this season.
Perhaps the pressures of playing in a weird season put in by by a pandemic had something to do it. Either way, Pluto wrote, “Some close to him thought he was more moody than normal.”
After the 2016 season, the Indians offered Lindor a 7-year extension valued at $100 million. He notably rejected it, and bet on himself. It was smart, as Lindor will surely double that offer, and maybe even triple it.
And if there’s anything to take from Pluto’s story, it’s that there will be a new player at the shortstop position when the Tribe opens the 2021 campaign.