Today’s piece, Braves and Indians Hypothetical Trades, is the 5th in a series in which I probe to find teams that could be reaching a selling point. Here are the 4 previous pieces:
- Braves and Reds Hypothetical Trade
- Braves and Cubs Hypothetical Trades
- Braves and Rockies Hypothetical Trades
- Braves and Diamondbacks Hypothetical Trades
The Indians, who will be the Indians for one more year, are a good baseball team. They were 35-25 in 2020 and collected 93, 91, 102, and 94 wins in the 4 years prior. After trading Mike Clevinger, the Indians moved into the Top-10 in farm systems and in that trade, they picked up Francisco Lindor’s likely replacement in Gabriel Arias. While they seem like they should have the payroll flexibility to keep Lindor, some of my Cleveland contacts think that the team’s payroll could be slashed all the way down to $45-50MM in 2021. If that’s the case, they’ll be forfeiting 2021 and building the best farm in MLB for a run starting in 2022. Let the games begin. As per usual, I’ll be using the MLB Trade Simulator to even out these fake deals.
Trade Value of Francisco Lindor
Lindor had a lesser 2020 by his standards, but it was seemingly fluky and it definitely didn’t affect his trade value, which is valued at $32.8MM. That’s pretty impressive considering he’s only under 1 year of control and is projected to get $22MM through his last year of arbitration.
Trade Value of Jose Ramirez
Fellow Braves Journal writer, Matt Pocza, has already dropped a piece on Jose Ramirez in mid-November, and after his 2020 season, his value has never been higher. He is controlled for 3 more years at a crazy good rate. His trade value is through the roof, as it should be, coming in at $72.8MM.
Trade Value of Roberto Perez
If you’re not in the know, Perez has a great reputation as a good framer and “pitcher’s catcher”. He broke out with the bat in 2019, but for now that seems like an outlier. He’s signed for $5.5MM for 2021 with a $7MM club option for 2022. However, the trade simulator seems to agree that the 2019 is the outlier and not the norm, and puts Perez’s projected value at $2.9MM.
Trade Number 1
Breakdown: This deal makes little sense and is a near 0% chance of happening, but this would be the cost. The Indians would get 2 years of Dansby and 6+ of Kyle Muller. Weird to say, but it could cost even more.
Trade Number 2
Breakdown: This…would hurt. However, Jose Ramirez would make the 3rd MVP-caliber player on the Braves team. Flags fly forever, baby.
Trade Number 3
Breakdown: Yeah…I traded Sean Newcomb again. It’s my hope that something like this doesn’t go down and the Braves believe enough in William Contreras to give him the backup spot but I’m not sure that’s true. Perez would be a solid addition to Travis d’Arnaud.
If the Indians are willing to trade Jose Ramirez, the Braves would be foolish to pass on adding an MVP caliber player at a remarkable price for the next 3 years, even if an add-on or 2 had to be made. And with the price, there’d still be enough money available for an outfield add.