Five MLB teams have reportedly emerged as strong suitors to acquire Francisco Lindor as the Cleveland Indians look to trade the All-Star shortstop this offseason.
According to MLB Network's Jon Morosi, the New York Mets, New York Yankees, Philadelphia Phillies, Toronto Blue Jays and St. Louis Cardinals are the "strongest candidates" to get Lindor from the Indians. Lindor, 26, has one year remaining on his contract worth about $21 million in salary arbitration.
It has been reported by multiple outlets that the Indians are likely to trade Lindor before the 2021 season to clear salary space, though a deal does not appear to be close this early in the offseason, per Morosi. Interested teams are reportedly not all prepared to have "serious" trade talks with the Indians, including the Mets who are transitioning under new owner Steve Cohen.
On Tuesday, Morosi reported that the Red Sox are not expected to prioritize a trade for Lindor despite his "strong" relationship with Boston manager Alex Cora. Lindor, who shares Cora's hometown of Caguas, Puerto Rico, grew up watching Cora play and has referred to him as a "big brother."
A four-time All-Star, Lindor batted .258 with 61 hits and eight home runs during the shortened 2020 season.
Keep up with the latest news and rumors around MLB:
- Pitcher Marcus Stroman accepted the Mets' $18.9 million qualifying offer.
- The Angels are down to two finalists for their general manager vacancy: Braves assistant GM Perry Minasian and Mariners assistant GM Justin Hollander (Ken Rosenthal and Fabian Ardaya, The Athletic). Minasian is considered the favorite, with a decision expected Thursday. (Rosenthal)
- Red Sox manager Alex Cora said he "deserved" the one-year suspension for his involvement in the Astros' sign-stealing scandal.
- Pitcher Kevin Gausman accepted the Giants' $18.9 million qualifying offer. (Ken Rosenthal, The Athletic)
- Newly-crowned National League Cy Young Award winner Trevor Bauer said there are no hard feelings between him and Yankees ace Gerrit Cole. The two were teammates in college and are known to have a chilly relationship then, but Bauer says that's in the past and he would be "more than open" to playing alongside Cole. (Brendan Kuty, NJ.com)