Posts By Bob Toth
It looked as though the Cleveland Indians would be quiet during the Major League portion of the Rule 5 draft on Thursday in the final activity from the annual Winter Meetings, but the club traded reliever Shawn Armstrong to the Seattle Mariners on Wednesday afternoon for international bonus pool money, opening up one spot on the team’s 40-man roster. With a spot now available, the Indians could grab an unprotected player from one of the other 29 clubs.
Last December, the Indians did try to steal away a potential candidate for their 2017 roster when they selected left-handed minor leaguer Hoby Milner from the Philadelphia Phillies organization with the 27th pick (15th overall).
The Cleveland Indians add a pair of players in a five-player swap with the Washington Senators, acquiring pitcher Early Wynn and first baseman Mickey Vernon for pitchers Joe Haynes and Ed Klieman and first baseman Eddie Robinson.
The Indians are not going to come home from the Winter Meetings empty handed, as they will return to Cleveland with a little extra spending money and one fewer reliever on the roster.
On Wednesday, the club dealt right-hander Shawn Armstrong to the Seattle Mariners for $500,000 in international bonus pool money.
On day three of the annual Winter Meetings, the Cleveland Indians have added another pitcher to the depth chart.
Jesse Sanchez of MLB.com reported on Tuesday via Twitter that the Indians had come to terms on a minor league agreement with former big league reliever Alexi Ogando.
The Indians had not formally announced the move at the time of the story. Ben Nicholson-Smith of Sportsnet.ca reported that, per sources, the deal includes a $1 million base salary at the MLB level with up to $650,000 in incentives and a May 1 opt-out date. Ogando is planning to be stretched out for use as a starter in camp, where he will be in attendance as a non-roster invitee.
Ogando, 34, spent last season pitching in Korea.
With sustained success on Major League Baseball fields comes the risk of coaching upheaval as the personnel behind the scenes gain new opportunities and promotions around the game.
That has been a theme of the Cleveland Indians’ offseason, as the club has had to rebuild manager Terry Francona‘s on-field staff after a wave of coaching changes following the club’s 102-60 season in 2017.
There can be some great debate about players who are on the fringe of a spot in the National Baseball Hall of Fame and one of the most frequently discussed players in recent years has been longtime MLB starter Jack Morris.
Long considered one of the top pitchers of the hall of very good, Morris finally gained entrance to Cooperstown immortality on Sunday when it was announced that both he and former teammate Alan Trammell had been selected by the Modern Era Committee for induction as part of the Hall of Fame Class of 2018.
One of the biggest questions of the baseball offseason was answered on Friday when Shohei Ohtani announced that he was joining the Los Angeles Angels after five seasons with the Nippon Ham Fighters in Japan.
A bigger question, with far more long reaching consequences, was answered in the overnight hours Friday night when the New York Yankees snuck in and completed a deal with the Miami Marlins to bring National League MVP Giancarlo Stanton to the Big Apple.
The moves had both put the free agent market into a standstill, as contenders for the pair of top players made their pitches to the duo. Now, the hot stove should heat up.
But what effect will the moves, in particular the Stanton addition by the Yankees, have on the Indians?