You might recall John Means from his no-hitter this season for Baltimore against the Seattle Mariners on May 5. Now, the left-handed starting pitcher and 2019 All-Star is on the trade rumors list as a potential player who could be departing the Orioles roster before the July 31 trade deadline. Given the need to fix the starting rotation for the Cleveland Indians, Means could be at the top of the trade targets list for the Tribe.
One big plus in trading for Means is also what could make him difficult to acquire. Despite being 28-years old, Means will be under contract through the 2024 season thanks to the arbitration process. For the 2021 season, he’s making less than $600,000 which is a bargain price for a pitcher that has an ERA of 2.05 and the best WHIP in the American League at 0.796.
The question for Baltimore will be if they think Means’ timeline will fit into theirs. If they think they will be competing within that four-year window and that Means will still be pitching at a high level they might not want to part with him. However, that could be a big gamble and trading him away for prospects that better fit into the club’s future might be the preferred route.
As for Cleveland, they will get an up-close view of Means on Saturday as he is set to pitch against the Tribe for Baltimore. He’s set to face Aaron Civale in what could be a matchup between two of the most underrated starting pitchers in the American League. If Means impresses, and maybe even if he doesn’t, he could find himself representing the Cleveland Indians by the season’s end.