Report: Francisco Lindor 'is going to get traded' by deadline

Lindor is under team control for two more seasons

James Rapien
December 03, 2019 - 2:00 pm
Aug 30, 2019; St. Petersburg, FL, USA; Cleveland Indians shortstop Francisco Lindor (12) on deck to bat during the second inning against the Tampa Bay Rays at Tropicana Field. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

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CLEVELAND, OH – The Indians are expected to make multiple moves this offseason. They could use another infielder, outfielder and a boost in the bullpen.

One way they could address some, if not all of their needs is by trading the face of the franchise and a new report says they could make the move in the near future.

ESPN’s Jeff Passan has spoken with multiple MLB executives that believe Francisco Lindor will be dealt by the trade deadline in 2020. 

"Lindor, multiple executives said, 'is going to get traded,'" Passan wrote. "They're not sure if it's this winter or this summer, but considering how disciplined the Indians are, they want to maximize Lindor's value, and doing so means trading him before the July 31 deadline."

It isn’t the first and it won’t be the last report comes out about a potential Lindor trade. In reality, this situation isn’t much different than the Trevor Bauer rumors from last offseason.

Are the Indians desperate to trade Lindor? They shouldn’t be –– he’s the face of the franchise and he gives them a chance to win every time he’s on the field.

Indians President Chris Antonetti knows the organization probably won’t be able to meet Lindor’s asking price for a new contract, but they also aren’t going to desperately trade him. The four-time All-Star is under team control for the next two seasons.

They should offer him a contract extension, even if it isn’t for the next decade. There are plenty of scenarios where Lindor ends up on another team in the next calendar year, but it’s hard to imagine the Indians are actively shopping him this offseason.

Passan is reporting what he’s hearing from executives around the league, which is 100 percent believable, but does anyone think these reports are coming from someone inside the Indians’ organization?

Of course other teams hope Lindor is traded. They want to land one of the best players in baseball. It's in their best interest to speculate about his future in Cleveland.

Lindor could end up in New York, Chicago or another big market this offseason, but Antonetti and the Indians are going to ask for an arm and two legs in return. The team that trades for Lindor will have to deal multiple top prospects, along with players that can contribute to the Indians’ big league roster right away. Antonetti isn’t going to lose the deal. He will listen and they will entertain trading Lindor because no one is untouchable, but a team is going to have to match the Indians’ steep asking price to get a deal done.

The club will have to weigh the return they could get back this offseason versus what Lindor could bring back a year from now –– he'll only have one-year of control left.

The Indians will probably trade him at some point, but unless a team knocks their socks off with an offer they can’t refuse, why in the world would they deal him this offseason?

The winter meetings begin on Monday in San Diego. That means the entire baseball world will discuss potential deals. The Indians will certainly get calls about Lindor, but that doesn’t mean he’ll be playing for another organization next season.