Slew of former Cleveland Guardians pitchers find new homes

Remember all those acquisitions the Cleveland Guardians made on the waiver wire last season? Well, all of those guys have essentially moved on to other teams.

Cleveland Guardians v Toronto Blue Jays
Cleveland Guardians v Toronto Blue Jays / Mark Blinch/GettyImages

Remember when the Cleveland Guardians raided the Los Angeles Angels waiver wire in mid-August as a last-ditch effort to make an outside push for the playoffs? Well, all those guys look to be gone from the staff, even though none of them really made a significant impact anyway. Maybe the best thing that came from that move was a strong play for Immaculate Grid when the Guardians are on it.

Back in November, reliever Reynaldo López signed a three-year, $30 million contract with the Atlanta Braves. Through 12 games with the Guardians, the 29-year-old pitched 11 innings, striking out 12 batters while walking four and not allowing a run. Of all the guys the Guardians picked up for the stretch run, López was likely the only one valuable enough to bring back. But when was the last time Cleveland shelled out $10 million a year for a reliever? López will reportedly have a chance during spring training to earn a spot in the starting rotation with the Braves.

Then, at the beginning of the month, the Boston Red Sox handed out probably the most surprising contract to a former Guardian. They gave starting pitcher Lucas Giolito a two-year, $38.5 million contract that allows him the chance to make up to $58 million over a three-year span. Giolito was one of the top starters in the American League from 2019-21 but has significantly fallen off since 2022.

Once he was traded to the Angels from the Chicago White Sox midway through last season, his production fell off a cliff, and he was designated for assignment by the Angels on August 29. He told that he’s hoping for some consistency to help get him back on track because he’s moved between three different cities since last July.

Matt Moore, who played just five games for the Guardians last year before getting DFA’d and signing with the Miami Marlins, has signed a one-year, $9 million contract to return to the Angels. It was reported that Moore, along with the rest of the Angels who were waived, was let go as a last-ditch effort to get the team under the luxury tax threshold. Moore had a 2.66 ERA through 44 innings while striking out 49 batters and walking 12 during his time in Los Angeles last season.

Finally, a report came out on Tuesday that former Guardians starter Noah Syndergaard has generated interest from the San Diego Padres and Pittsburgh Pirates. Per Robert Murray of FanSided, both clubs are in talks with him to sign a “one-year prove-it deal.” At one time, Syndergaard was known as “Thor” and dominated the National League while leading the New York Mets to the World Series in 2015.

Then he was hit by the injury bug and Tommy John surgery. Despite signing a one-year contract with the Dodgers last year, he was traded in what essentially amounted to a salary dump for Amed Rosario before the trade deadline. Through six starts with the Guardians, he posted a 5.40 ERA while serving as someone to simply eat up innings. He was then DFA’d by Cleveland and released on August 30.