Help From the Minor Leagues Keeps Coming
The Guardians used 17 rookies in 2022, and it seems like that is just the beginning of a strong stream of young talent that is on its way to Cleveland over the coming years. The Guardians have a number of prospects who will make an impact in 2023, including Brennan and Jones, who made their major-league debuts near the end of 2022, and Valera, who seems poised to make his debut in 2023 after hitting 24 home runs in 484 minor-league at-bats last year.
Neither Jones nor Brennan made a huge impact in 2022, but either one would be an immediate upgrade over Straw offensively. As we noted earlier, Straw could be dealt to a team looking to improve its own defense. Such a move would help control the Guardians' payroll moving forward and open the door for some of their younger players to step up.
The Guardians finished 29th out of 30 teams in home runs in 2022. Don’t expect them to finish that low in 2023, as they can reasonably improve in a number of different ways throughout the offseason.