A recent rumor suggests that Francisco Lindor is not willing to negotiate a contract extension with the Cleveland Indians. This could be good for the San Diego Padres.
But I still held the belief that A.J. Preller was going to make a big move for a big time player at some point in 2020.
Maybe that has change a little bit now with the shutdown and depending on what type of season we actually get in 2020, but a recent rumor about Francisco Lindor has at least sparked some intrigue for the Padres — at least from me and others on Twitter.
According to Keith Law (usually grain of salt with his reports), the Indians have been trying to negotiate a contract extension with Lindor but he’s not having any of it.
The shortstop is 26 years old and won’t turn 27 until November. He was set to make $17.5 million through arbitration in 2020, but that number could go down depending on how players’ pay cuts workout in a shortened season.
And then he has one year of arbitration left in which he’ll likely make around $22 million before becoming a free agent at the prime age of 28.
A couple of things I’d like to point out here.
One, I can understand why Lindor would be hesitant to entertain a contract extension with the Indians. Cleveland appears to be headed towards a rebuild, while the Minnesota Twins and Chicago White Sox are on the rise in the American League Central.
Also, at 28 he will likely get a $200 million-plus payday in free agency and I doubt the Indians will be able to match those offers.
I’ve never really understood why Padres fans were so thrilled with the idea of trading for Lindor, only because you’d have to move your franchise player in Fernando Tatis Jr. to another position.
Lindor has won two Gold Glove awards at shortstop, including 2019, so he is playing shortstop.
That means you’d likely have to move Tatis to second, which would solve that problem, but then I think you’re wasting his athleticism.
I know some people have thrown out the idea of moving Tatis to center field, but I think that’s a harder transition than some people realize.
And, in my opinion, you don’t trade for Lindor unless you can extend him. I’m not sure why he’d be willing to talk about an extension with the Padres and not the Indians, and I honestly don’t think the Padres are in a position to give out another huge contract unless they can move some money (cough, cough Eric Hosmer. Cough, cough Wil Myers).
We’ll see how things play out with the Indians, but if they do decide to move him I would not be surprised at all if Preller and the Padres are in the mix.