3 Former Guardians Cleveland Can Sign For a Reunion in 2024

As the expression goes, "what's old is new again." Could this be the case for the Guardians when it comes to these former Cleveland free agents?

Michael Brantley is one of three former Guardians who Cleveland can reunite with this winter.
Michael Brantley is one of three former Guardians who Cleveland can reunite with this winter. / Ken Blaze-USA TODAY Sports
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3. Carlos Santana, DH

The majority of any success the Guardians saw in 2023 stemmed from reliable pitching.

After all, the offense was anything but that. The club finished near the bottom of most MLB per game statistics on offense, including runs (4.09, 27th), homers (0.77, 30th), total bases (12.98, 26th), and on-base plus slugging percentage (.695, 27th).

In other words, the Guardians are desperate for some help in the batter's box. That's why a reunion with veteran slugger Carlos Santana makes sense. The third time is the charm, right?

Santana, 37, already has two stints in Cleveland under his belt, having started his career in the city (2010 to 2017) before returning for the 2019 and 2020 campaigns. He was productive in both tenures, amassing 216 HRs and 710 RBIs across 10 total campaigns while finishing 16th or better in AL MVP voting twice with a Silver Slugger award mixed in.

He also ranks highly among some of the franchise's all-time records, including home runs (T-5th), walks (881, 2nd), and extra-base hits (503, 8th).

Carlos Santana returning to Cleveland could be exactly what the Guardians' batting order needs.
Carlos Santana returning to Cleveland could be exactly what the Guardians' batting order needs. / Ken Blaze-USA TODAY Sports

Since his second run with the Guardians came to an end, Santana hasn't found a place to call home, suiting up for four teams across three seasons. But even with a lot of movement, he still finished each of those campaigns with at least 19 HRs and 60 RBIs — something only Jose Ramirez did for Cleveland in 2023.

Speaking of last season, Santana looked like he turned the clock back a bit, finishing with 23 round-trippers and 86 RBIs — both personal bests since 2019 — in 146 games split between the Brewers and Pittsburgh Pirates.

Even if he's no longer a top-15 player in either conference, Santana's bat could be the one that gets the Guardians' offense going.

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