The trade rumors have really started swirling around Cleveland Guardians pitcher Shane Bieber, and there's an increasingly strong chance he could be dealt this offseason. The Reds and Cubs have already been linked in trade talks, and there is no shortage of other teams that have inquired.
And if the team's 2024 Opening Day ticket promotion ad is any indication, Bieber is definitely gone. Take a look at what the team posted on social media Wednesday:
Now, not featuring your ace pitcher (though some might debate that now) among the five players you're promoting to entice people to buy Opening Day tickets is an interesting decision, but not necessarily one that proves anything. Still, it's hard to overlook the very conspicuous absence of Bieber here.
And that's not all - in the 2024 schedule poster the team gave away during the final home game this season, you know who wasn't among the players there, either? That's right - Shane Bieber.
There's a pretty good chance the people making these promos and posters simply knew going in there would be a non-zero chance that Bieber would get traded this offseason and just wanted to account for any potential scenario. But where there's smoke, there's fire, and right now, there is a lot of smoke surrounding a Shane Bieber trade.
And honestly? It might sound crazy, but it's a move the Guardians can afford to make, and one they've done many times with starting pitchers of their past. Plus, word on the street is the Rays are looking to shop outfielder Randy Arozarena. Might they be interested in a year of Shane Bieber, especially if they're likely going to deal Tyler Glasnow themselves?