Months removed from a postseason berth, the Cleveland Indians arrived at the winter meetings with an open mind. That philosophy includes listening to trade offers for the most valuable starting pitcher on their staff.
According to Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports, Cleveland is willing to listen to offers for Justin Masterson, hoping to elicit long-term options. Masterson, 28, is entering his final season before free agency.
With former Indians starter Ubaldo Jimenez currently on the free-agent market, Cleveland would risk losing 40 percent of their 2013 rotation if a trade commenced for Masterson. Few 92-win teams would be comfortable losing almost 400 innings of excellent pitching, but Cleveland understandably doesn't want to be in the position of losing Masterson for nothing next winter.
This past season, the Indians ace posted a 3.45 ERA in 193 innings. If Cleveland does pull the trigger on a Masterson trade, it would be for players under team control for significantly longer than one year.
Yet, the ability to help sooner, rather than later, is also key.
With American League Manager of the Year Terry Franconca in the dugout, and a core of talented everyday players like Jason Kipnis, Nick Swisher and Carlos Santana, Cleveland isn't in rebuilding mode.
Which teams match up with Cleveland's demands?
Here are the best potential trade packages and landing spots for Justin Masterson.
*All statistics courtesy of Baseball-Reference, unless otherwise noted.