The Cleveland Indians and Shane Bieber both want a deal to happen but when it will is anyone’s guess as the team now has the finances to do it.
Shane Bieber is the reigning AL Cy Young winner and the de-facto Ace of the AL. He had an impressive season, albeit in just 12 starts. Yet, in those 12 starts during the COVID-19-shortened 2020 season, Bieber wracked up an impressive 122 strikeouts, with an EAR of just 1.66.
Granted, it was over just 77.1 innings but still.
Bieber is going to be demanding more money eventually. Quite a bit more. Right now he’s only played in full season and only has one Cy Young and All-Star nod to his name so far. In a year or two, it could be much, much different looking. Cleveland would be wise to make a deal happen. Bieber has said he wants to stay here and the Indians obviously want him.
With the freed-up finances, it sounds like Indians president Chris Antonetti intends to lock down guys like Bieber soon, telling the Associated Press (via ESPN);
"Part of the reason, if you look at the composition of our roster, it’s a lot younger and at different points in the service spectrum than maybe we’ve been at different points over the last few seasons. I would expect over the next six to 12 months, the guarantees that we will have moving forward will increase and you’ll start to see some of those commitments moving forward."
It very much sounds like Antonetti is getting ready to lock some guys up.
While some fans are quick to point out the Indians traded away Francisco Lindor, the Indians are not going to pay a guy $300 million over 10 years. That’s insane. The Indians aren’t going to throw around that type of money but that’s not to say the Indians haven’t done just that in the past.
Travis Hafner, Grady Sizemore, Nick Swisher, and Edwin Encarnacion are just a few guys that were inked to big deals.
The Indians can and have signed guys to big deals before, so Bieber will get him eventually. Assuming he doesn’t try to price himself out of the city as Lindor did.