The one staple of the Cleveland Indians for the last decade has been the top of the rotation ace Corey Kluber.
With a 98-58 record over his first 9 Major League seasons, Kluber is the owner a 3.16 lifetime ERA to go along with 1461 Ks (to only 292 walks), and a 134 ERA+ in 1341.1 IP. He broke out as a main ace in 2014, when he won his first Cy Young award, the award that goes to the season’s most dominant pitcher, going 18-9 with a 2.44 ERA and 269 Ks. His second such award came in 2017, when he had a stellar league-leading 7.36 SO/W, .869 WHIP, 18 wins and 2.25 ERA. He also has postseason experience, leading the Indians to the World Series in 2016.
His 2019 was forgettable, with an ERA north of 5 due to injuries and bad luck. But his FIP, however, which is a statistic most front offices use to gauge future results, was just over 4. His lifetime FIP is 2.99.
With the final year of his guaranteed contract with Cleveland coming up, the Texas Rangers are in the final stages of acquiring him via trade per ESPNs Jeff Passan.
According to Ken Rosenthal, Kluber will get the $17.5M he’s owed for 2020, but Kluber being traded will turn his 2021 club option for $18M into a vesting option. This means that if Kluber pitches 160 innings in 2020 with no IL stint, he is automatically paid $18M to be a Ranger in 2021 assuming the trade goes through. He will also receive a $1M assignment bonus.
The return to Cleveland is not yet known but PSE will keep you updated as soon as it is.
Part of Cleveland’s return will be outfielder DeLino DeShields Jr., son of former LA Dodger DeLino DeShields. Still only 27, Jr. is a seasoned MLB vet known for his glove and light-hitting (18 HR, .668 OPS over 5 seasons). Also heading to Ohio, will be reliever Emmanuel Clase. Clase threw 238 pitchers that hit 98 mph on the gun or higher in 2019, the Indians staff threw 12 total. There is more in return, but it hasn’t been reported yet.
Update: Zach Meisel of the Athletic is now reported it’s 2-for-1, without even any salary relief.
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