Friday Five: Trades for the Cleveland Indians to move Mike Clevinger

Starting pitcher Mike Clevinger #52 of the Cleveland Indians (Photo by Ron Schwane/Getty Images)
Starting pitcher Mike Clevinger #52 of the Cleveland Indians (Photo by Ron Schwane/Getty Images) /
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J.D. Martinez, Boston Red Sox
J.D. Martinez #28 of the Boston Red Sox (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images) /

We’ve already talked about how the Cleveland Indians need hitting, but in a similar stance, the Boston Red Sox need pitching.

Boston has allowed the most runs so far in the 2020 season, giving up 147 earned runs, while also logging a league-worst WHIP of 1.65, leading to a last-place standing in the AL East and a 6-18 record.

The main weakness of the Indians’ lineup right now is the revolving door in the outfield that can’t settle on any starters. We’ve seen blips from Tyler Naquin, Bradley Zimmer, Greg Allen, Delino DeShields, Franmil Reyes, Domingo Santana, Oscar Mercado, Daniel Johnson and even Mike Freeman. Quantity is there, but quality hasn’t been. Reyes is starting to catch on, but the rest are question marks.

Meanwhile, in Boston, they have great depth in the outfield and not much on the pitching staff.

J.D. Martinez has had a slow start to the season, having just two home runs and a .241 average, but we know what he can do once he catches on and a change of scenery could help that. He would provide another power bat to the Indians’ lineup and has been a steady player in the field as well.

Martinez’s issue could be his contract, which isn’t exactly affordable for a lower market team like Cleveland. Martinez has a base salary this year of $23.75 million with a player option for the next two years. Clevinger’s base salary is currently $4.1 million with two years of arbitration left, which is why Santana is added here as well.

Santana doesn’t have a huge contract at just $1.25 million in base salary, but it’s a little more progress towards making room for Martinez in Cleveland. Santana could also provide Boston with a solid fourth outfield option and a $5 million club option next year if they want to bring him back.

The other player in return, Andrew Politi, is a pitching prospect that is listed as Boston’s 28th best prospect by At 24 years old and not having advanced beyond High-A, it’s just a roll the dice throw in for the Indians to add to their farm system.