Guardians predicted to trade starting pitcher this offseason

Cleveland Guardians v Minnesota Twins
Cleveland Guardians v Minnesota Twins / David Berding/GettyImages

There is going to be plenty of speculation about the Cleveland Guardians and what moves they could make this offseason. One move in particular that has been projected should not come as a surprise to anyone, a trade of Shane Bieber.

Bieber is entering his final arbitration-eligible season, and if the past is any indicator, Cleveland could be motivated to move him this offseason. Time and time again, Cleveland has moved players who are on the brink of heading into free agency, and it is easy to imagine a scenario where that comes to fruition again.

Bleacher Report's Joel Reuter put together a prediction for every team this offseason, with the Guardians' entry involving the 2020 Cy Young Award winner. The projected deal includes a familar trade partner, the New York Mets.

Heading to Queens would be Bieber, while the Guardians would be a collection of Top 20 prospects. Outfielder Alex Ramirex (11), right handed pitcher Christian Scott (12), and right handed pitcher Tyler Stuart (17) would be coming to Cleveland in this deal. 

"A return package of toolsy outfielder Alex Ramirez and pitchers Christian Scott (19 GS, 2.57 ERA, 107 K, 87.2 IP at A/A+/AA) and Tyler Stuart (21 GS, 2.20 ERA, 112 K, 110.2 IP at A+//AA) would be a boon to the Cleveland farm system.

Joel Reuter

This hypothetical deal is far from being anywhere as exciting as the connection made by Jim Bowden between Cleveland and San Diego that would result in Juan Soto donning a Guardians uniform. However, it does seem like something that this front office would consider.

The reality of the situation is that the Guardians need to look for major league talent or prospects on the cusp of breaking into the bigs but who are blocked for one reason or another. While the outfield help coming Cleveland's way is enticing, they need help right now, and adding a prospect who has yet to play past A-Ball does not seem to be the instant production they are looking for.

Adding two more pitchers into Cleveland's pitching factory does seem to be a logical move, as they have continued churn through their major league rotation the past few years. It would also provide some insurance in case any of their own prospects do not work out. However, they do not necessarily have a pressing need on their major league roster currently, with Tanner Bibee, Gavin Williams, and Logan Allen making an impact during their rookie seasons. This is in addition to still having Triston McKenzie in the mix for a good amount of starts.

What it will come down to for Cleveland is the level of talent that teams will offer in exchange for Bieber. That is if they look to move him this winter. Considering their current roster makeup and belief that they are closer to rather than further from competing, they may be more inclined to opt for major league talent than the group of prospects suggested by Reuter.