There is an expectation that the Cleveland Guardians will at least attempt to improve their outfield this offseason. Should this be the path the Guardians decide to go down in free agency, there could be one less option available to them. Arizona Diamondbacks outfielder Lourdes Gurriel Jr.
Gurriel has reportedly expressed his interest in remaining in Arizona, according to a post from USA Today's Bob Nightengale.
There are a couple of things to take into account here. First off, Arizona has to be willing to and capable of bringing him back, both prospects that should very much be on the table. There is another factor to consider here. The World Series just came to an end in five games, with the Texas Rangers winning their first-ever title Wednesday night. Being so close but not being able to come away with a World Series title may be enough to convince Gurriel to stay with the Diamondbacks in an attempt to resolve unfinished business.
Of course, there is the whole reported by Bob Nightengale factor to consider here. The frequency of the complete opposite of what Nightengale reports coming to fruition is truly astonishing. So much so that the comments/replies of whatever is posted by Nightengale are flooded with responses noting that fact. While this is not a hard and fast rule, the pure volume of instances of things developing in this manner is beyond uncanny.
Gurriel Jr. is coming off a season that saw him set career highs in a few areas. The 30-year-old Cuban-born outfielder's 35 doubles, 24 home runs, and 2.1 Fangraphs WAR were all the best single-season marks of his six-year career. This is exactly the type of production that the Guardians need in their outfield. Cleveland should make a hard push to acquire his services should Gurriel Jr. explore other teams besides the Diamondbacks.
This possibility was recently noted as one of four potential free-agent outfielders that could be acquired this offseason, and it would make a ton of sense to add someone with his track record to their lineup. That is if he decides to consider other opportunities, and according to Nightengale's report, that prospect may not be all that likely.