Bradley Zimmer, OF, Cleveland Indians
What is happening with Bradley Zimmer right now is almost like watching the Tyler Naquin situation all over again. Zimmer will be 29-years old entering the 2022 season. While he has multiple years of arbitration remaining, the team showed with Naquin that it might not matter.
More from Away Back Gone
- Cleveland Guardians tantalizingly close to locking up AL Central tiebreakers
- Cleveland Guardians: Terry Francona becomes meme in profanity-laced ejection
- Say goodbye to defensive shifts and hello to bigger bases, pitch clock in 2023
- Cleveland Guardians: Shane Bieber second-fastest to 800 strikeouts in major-league history
- The next week will make or break the Cleveland Guardians’ season
It seems like Myles Straw and Harold Ramirez are most likely locked into spots in next year’s outfield. Prospects Oscar Gonzalez and George Valera will soon be knocking at the door, meaning that players like Zimmer, Oscar Mercado and Daniel Johnson could be pushed aside. The question is just when.
Of those three, Zimmer has the least amount of team control left, set to become a free agent in 2025. However, Cleveland could trade or release him at any point and that might be a route they consider.
On the year, Zimmer is slashing .240/.342/.350 with five doubles and five home runs on top of 10 stolen bases. That might be enough to be a depth player, but given what the Tribe need they might be more inclined to give that role to Mercado or Johnson. Both are younger and have a bit more upside if they can tap into their potential.
Of the three on this list, Zimmer is the most likely to stay, but that doesn’t mean a whole lot right now. The outfield is a mess, but as Naquin showed us last year, that doesn’t mean players are automatically safe.