The Cleveland Indians have yet to make any headlines this offseason, but some players with ties to the organization are in the news this week.
A handful of former members of the Cleveland Indians organization are either looking for or getting ready to settle into new homes.
Nick Goody, who was DFA’d by the Indians last week, has been claimed off of waivers by the Texas Rangers. Part of the risk inherent in placing a player on waivers is that there’s a better-than-not-chance he winds up with a team you’ll have to compete with.
Texas is a team on the mend after a couple down years, and the Rangers figure to be aggressive in trying to improve this winter before they open a brand new ballpark next spring. Goody wasn’t an ideal loss for the Tribe to begin with, but now he’ll likely be pitching out of the bullpen for a team that will undoubtedly be aiming at an AL Wild Card spot in 2020.
If the Rangers are able to land one of this winter’s big fish, like Texas native Anthony Rendon, that’s not an unrealistic aspiration.
Elsewhere around the league, Jesus Aguilar was DFA’d by the Tampa Bay Rays on Wednesday as a corresponding move to a low-profile trade acquisition. Aguilar put up huge 2018 numbers with Milwaukee in a 40-homer campaign lamented many times over by Indians fans.
He never came close to repeating those numbers in 2019, but it will be interesting to see if any teams–including Cleveland–are interested in taking a flier on a left-handed hitter who once flashed enormous power. He should field at least a handful of low-risk offers in the coming weeks or months.
In the biggest news of the week regarding a player who once was a part of the Indians organization, Drew Pomeranz inked a four-year, $34-million contract with the San Diego Padres. The term comes as something of a surprise, as a two-year deal seemed to be more in the vicinity of what Pomeranz could be looking at.
Pomeranz has changed teams just as often as he’s changed roles throughout his career, moving back and forth between the bullpen and the rotation for six different MLB clubs since 2011. He is the first domino to fall in what is certain to be an active offseason for the Padres.
It’s also worth noting that his 25 appearances with the Brewers in 2019 served as by far the most successful sample size he’s enjoyed on the mound in any role since at least 2016. His deal with San Diego isn’t astronomical, but it’s not without risk.
The offseason appears to be gaining some traction, with Pomeranz qualifying as another early and relatively high-profile signing in the wake of catcher Yasmani Grandal and reliever Will Smith. Whatever plans the Indians are making, they may need to speed up the process if their sights are set on any players in this mid-tier free agency range.