Cleveland Indians: Francisco Lindor trade opportunities to the NL Central

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Francisco Lindor

CLEVELAND, OH – SEPTEMBER 27: Francisco Lindor #12 of the Cleveland Indians forces out Ke’Bryan Hayes #13 of the Pittsburgh Pirates at second base during the game at Progressive Field on September 27, 2020 in Cleveland, Ohio. (Photo by Kirk Irwin/Getty Images)

Moving through the divisions for potential trades for Francisco Lindor, we explore possibilities for the Cleveland Indians within the NL Central.

With the edict in place that Francisco Lindor will be traded prior to Opening Day, the Cleveland Indians are looking across Major League Baseball for possible trade partners. This time we’ll preview the NL Central teams, who have multiple landing spots for Lindor.

What makes the NL Central unique, is that you can view multiple teams that have the payroll to make a legitimate run at a long-term deal for Lindor, and also teams who could see value in a 1 year trial as they believe they are in a championship window.

There were only five games separating four out of the five teams in the NL Central in 2020. Even with the announcement that the Chicago Cubs may be looking to cut salary, they are still a team wanting to contend in 2021, and have the resources to make a serious run at Lindor.

The challenge in any Francisco Lindor trade is that the return will not equal what Lindor presently brings to the Cleveland Indians. Chris Antonetti will be looking to cut costs, but since Lindor is probably a 1-year rental, don’t expect the significant hauls we’ve heard rumored this time last off-season. For the Indians to make a successful trade, any top prospect(s) and some multi-year controlled MLB ready assets will be a win.

Only the Pittsburgh Pirates seem like a long shot to even consider adding Lindor from the NL Central. Yet like all teams in this division, the Pirates have a very dedicated fan base, and if fans are allowed back at PNC Park, the addition of Lindor would not only be a selling point, but potential building block to spark their long-term vision of contention.

So with that, lets take a look at what trades are possible within the NL Central for teams seeking to inquire about Francisco Lindor.

Other Divisions

AL Central

AL East

NL East

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