By far, the biggest strength of the Indians roster heading into 2021 is the starting rotation. The team has an ace in Shane Bieber, solid middle-rotation arms in Zach Plesac and Tristan McKenzie and a reliable four or five starter in Aaron Civale.
If the team opts not to trade veteran Carlos Carrasco, then there will be no need to add another starter. But if they do, Carlos Rodon could be a solid replacement.
The 28-year old is a former first-round draft pick who hasn’t quite lived up to his full potential but has shown flashes. In each of his first four big-league seasons, Rodon never posted an ERA above 4.18, including a strong 2016 season that saw him post a 4.04 ERA in 28 starts and 165 innings of work.
Each of the last two seasons have been ravaged by injuries for the south-paw leading to Chicago making the decision to non-tender his contract.
If healthy, Rodon has the potential to be a reliable fourth or fifth starter, making him a perfect fit for the Indians for multiple reasons.
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The first is that all of Cleveland’s current starters are right-handed; thus, Rodon would provide the Indians with a left-handed option and the second is that he’d be an insurance policy in the event of a Carrasco trade.