Francisco Lindor Trade Rumors: Indians Intend to Move Star Before Opening Day

Adam Wells@adamwells1985Featured ColumnistNovember 5, 2020

Cleveland Indians' Francisco Lindor throws out Kansas City Royals' Alex Gordon at first base in the sixth inning of a baseball game, Thursday, Sept. 10, 2020, in Cleveland. (AP Photo/Tony Dejak)
Tony Dejak/Associated Press

Francisco Lindor's time with the Cleveland Indians will reportedly come to an end before the start of the 2021 MLB season.

Per USA Today's Bob Nightengale, "several rival teams have been informed" that Cleveland intends to trade its All-Star shortstop this offseason.

Cleveland's early offseason moves indicate the team is going to make significant cuts to its payroll.

The Indians declined their options for closer Brad Hand, first baseman Carlos Santana and outfielder Domingo Santana on Oct. 30. Hand was the biggest surprise because he was only owed $10 million in 2021. The three-time All-Star had a 2.05 ERA with 29 strikeouts and 16 saves in 23 games last season.

Lindor has been one of the most-talked-about trade candidates for more than a year. Nightengale reported last December that Cleveland was engaged in "serious" talks with the Los Angeles Dodgers.

Even though nothing came of those discussions, Cleveland could feel more urgency to get a deal done before the start of next season. Lindor is projected to earn $21.5 million in 2021, his final year of arbitration, per MLB Trade Rumors.

It seems unlikely the Indians sign Lindor to a long-term deal, so this is their chance to maximize his value in a potential trade. The two-time Gold Glove winner hit .258/.335/.415 with eight homers in 60 games last season.

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