CLEVELAND — Editor's note: the video in the player above is from Jan. 11, 2021.
Francisco Lindor may now be a member of the New York Mets, but it appears the Cleveland Indians will be bringing back at least one of their starting middle infielders in 2021. According to Jon Heyman of the MLB Network, the Indians have agreed to a deal to re-sign second baseman Cesar Hernandez.
Per Zack Meisel of The Athletic, Hernandez's new contract will be a one-year deal will a club option for 2022.
After having spent the first seven years of his career with the Philadelphia Phillies, Hernandez arrived in Cleveland a year ago on a one-year contract. Appearing in 58 of the Indians' games in the shortened 2020 campaign, he hit for a .283 average (.763 OPS) to go along with three home runs and 20 RBIs, in addition to winning the American League Gold Glove Award for his play at second base.
Cleveland's re-signing of the 30-yer-old Hernandez is somewhat of a curious one, considering the return the Indians received for Lindor earlier this month. In exchange for the four-time All-Star, Cleveland acquired infielders Amed Rosario and Andrés Giménez, both of whom possess the ability to play second base.
The re-signing of Hernandez, however, could give the Indians the flexibility to either give Rosario reps in the outfield or start the season with Giménez in the minor leagues.
Whatever Cleveland's plans might be, it appears the Indians may not be done with Tuesday's move. According to Heyman, the Indians "have more irons in the free agent fire" as they are "looking around to improve their team."