Indians sign Carrasco to two-year contract extension

Carrasco is signed through the 2022 season

James Rapien
December 06, 2018 - 2:16 pm
Cleveland Indians starting pitcher Carlos Carrasco delivers in the first inning of a baseball game against the Minnesota Twins, Tuesday, Aug. 28, 2018, in Cleveland.

(AP Photo/Tony Dejak)


Cleveland, OH (92.3 The Fan) - Carlos Carrasco is here to stay after the Indians exercised his option for the 2020 season, prior to signing him to a two-year contract extension. 

The extension includes a team option for the 2023 season. 

Zack Meisel of The Athletic reports Carrasco will make $12 million in 2021 and $12 million in 2022. The Indians could keep him around in 2023 for $14 million or buyout the contract for $3 million.

His 1,127 strikeouts are ninth in Indians' history. He was acquired in July of 2009 as part of the Cliff Lee trade with Philadelphia. Carrasco, 31, has made at least 25 starts over the last four seasons and is averaging 206 strikeouts over that span. He finished 17-10 last season with a 3.38 ERA. 

Carrasco has had some injuries in the past and paying a pitcher into their mid-30's is always risky. 

“We’ve seen Carlos continue to mature and develop in so many ways since he’s been with us — both on the field, in the clubhouse and also in the way he’s continued to prepare," Indians President Chris Antonetti said on a conference call. "He has evolved to the point where his routines, the way he conditions, the way he takes care of himself are extraordinary and I think that’s allowed him to be very durable despite some freak injuries.”

Antonetti insisted that this move won't impact the Indians' plans for the 2019 season and has more to do with stabilizing the future of their rotation. 

“This doesn’t impact that at all (payroll) for this offseason," Antonetti said. "The terms of Carlos’ contract are unchanged for 2019. What this does is it provides us additional continuity in the rotation beyond 2020.”

There has been plenty of speculation about what the Indians would do this offseason. You've probably had a conversation about a potential Corey Kluber trade. Maybe you've been asked about Trevor Bauer's future? 

The Carrasco extension makes it clear that the Indians still plan on winning now. He will be 34-years-old when his contract is up, assuming they don't exercise his option. That's not a move you make with a rebuild in mind.

“This move is indicative of a continued investment by our ownership and our team and a desire to remain a very competitive team as we move forward," Antonetti said.

This isn't the first and certainly won't be the last move the Indians make this offseason. Could Kluber or Bauer be on their way out following this news?