Wander Franco, SS, Tampa Bay Rays
Acquiring the No. 1 prospect in baseball from the American League champions who are just as strapped for cash as the Cleveland Indians are seems like only a dream, but why not explore it? What if the Rays decide that the Indians have their missing piece and are willing to part with Wander Franco to get it?
Being the No. 1 prospect in baseball at just the age of 19, Franco is expected to arrive to The Show in 2021 and would immediately fill in for Lindor should the Indians decide to either include him in this trade or move him elsewhere. Cleveland wouldn’t miss a beat and would be set at shortstop until Franco’s arbitration ended.
By why would the Rays part with Franco? Let’s say that Franco needs a bit of grooming, which is possible even for the top prospect. The Rays can either wait for him to get up to speed on a team that has shown they are ready to compete now, or they can move Franco for a player that can fit into the team right now and get them back to the World Series.
Also, with Brandon Lowe and Willy Adames in the middle infield, the argument could be made that Franco isn’t a dire need right now. In time, Franco would be an upgrade over either, but it all depends on what the Rays need right now and what the mindset of the ownership of front office is after the World Series.