The Indians are still trying to figure out the best way to plan for the 2021 season. Despite the uncertainties and financial losses, the Tribe has been clear that its goal hasn’t changed. Francisco Lindor, the Indians star, has been rumored to be a trade piece in the offseason. The Indians’ 2020 season ended a few weeks earlier than the team had hoped, following a a two game sweep by the Yankees in the American League Wild Card Series.
“As you look logically at what’s happened over the course of the season and the uncertainty of what we’re facing in 2021, our financial reality is, you know, it’s daunting,” Indians president of baseball operations Chris Antonetti said at the end of the season. “But that doesn’t change the goal and the expectation of, ‘How do we find a way to continue to build a championship team?’”
The Indians have a hole at second base and may have another if Lindor is traded. The organization has expressed its interest in re-signing second baseman Cesar Hernandez, but financial limitations my limit the chances of a reunion. If Lindor is traded, receiving some middle-infield help in return would be a must as the Tribe waits for Tyler Freeman to be ready to take over at shortstop.
Last year the Indians outfield crew posted the second-worst batting average (.194) and the lowest slugging percentage (.300) in the Majors. This is a clear need for them to address. Last season they platooned many options but it did not lead to any success. Cleveland has a few internal options as prospects Daniel Johnson and Nolan Jones are available, but another impact bat wouldn’t be the worst thing to throw into the mix.
The Indians parted ways with Brad Hand, their closer in 2020, and Oliver Perez due to free agency. The Tribe has internal options but adding to the bullpen never hurts.
Buy a SHIRT!