The Cleveland Indians were the subject of many reports throughout Major League Baseball’s annual Winter Meetings last week, but they did not deal away one of the two starting pitchers rumored to be on the block while in Las Vegas.
Despite talks reportedly intensifying with the Los Angeles Dodgers about Corey Kluber, the two-time American League Cy Young Award winner remains on the roster, as does emerging front-of-the-rotation starter Trevor Bauer.
Although there was no shortage of suitors, Kluber and Bauer very well could remain with the team for the foreseeable future, according to Fancred’s Jon Heyman.
While in Las Vegas, the Indians sent infielder/designated hitter Edwin Encarnacion to the Seattle Mariners and Yandy Diaz to the Tampa Bay Rays in a three-team deal that brought back Carlos Santana, cash considerations and versatile infielder/outfielder Jake Bauers. Then, over the weekend, the Indians dealt first baseman Yonder Alonso to the Chicago White Sox for minor-league outfielder Alex Call.
Earlier in the offseason, the Indians traded catcher Yan Gomes to the Washington Nationals for minor-league outfielder Daniel Johnson and right-handed pitcher Jefry Rodriguez.
Kluber finished third in the voting for the 2018 American League Cy Young Award after another standout season at the front of Cleveland’s rotation.
In his 33 starts this season, Kluber (20-7) registered 222 strikeouts against just 34 walks, 179 hits and 69 earned runs allowed over 215.0 innings of work while anchoring a pitching staff that led the way to the Indians’ third consecutive AL Central Division Championship.
Opposing batters hit just .223 against Kluber during the 2018 season.
The AL Cy Young Award winner in both 2014 and 2017, Kluber won four games in three different months this past season, starting with an 8-1 slate through April and May. Additionally, Kluber posted a 4-1 record over his six August starts.
An AL All-Star for the third consecutive season, Kluber posted an 8-2 record in 13 starts following the 2018 MLB All-Star Game. Over 81.1 innings pitched, Kluber struck out 90 batters and walked only 17 while cutting down on his home runs allowed.
Kluber allowed 19 home runs in 133.2 innings pitched before the Mid-Summer Classic, but in 50 less innings of work from mid-July to the end of the season, he surrendered only six round-trippers.
Along with being a Cy Young Award finalist, Kluber was named a finalist for an AL Gold Glove Award this season.
Defensively, Kluber had 19 putouts and 13 assists. A first-time nominee for the Rawlings AL Gold Glove Award, Kluber did not make an error in 32 total chances for the Indians.
Kluber is 96-55 with a 3.09 ERA in 201 games over eight seasons with the Indians.
Bauer heads into his third arbitration year after his best profession season.
Considered by some to be a potential Cy Young Award candidate for his efforts through the first four months of the season, Bauer set new career highs in several statistical categories despite missing five weeks because of a broken bone in his leg suffered against the White Sox on August 11.
Bauer registered 221 strikeouts against 134 hits, 43 earned runs and 57 walks allowed in 175.1 innings of work over his 28 appearances. Bauer compiled a 12-6 record and 2.21 earned run average while opposing hitters batted just .208 against him in 2018.
Bauer set a single-season high for strikeouts and personal lows for ERA, hits, runs and earned runs allowed and walks in a year with at least 26 starts.