The Cleveland Indians are open to trading star shortstop Francisco Lindor this winter if the return is significant enough, and one team that may have the pieces to get a deal done is the Cincinnati Reds.
The Reds have had discussions with the Indians about a potential trade involving Lindor, Mark Feinsand of MLB.com reports. Cleveland is likely looking for a combination of at least one MLB-ready starter and prospects in return for Lindor, and the Reds may be in position to provide that. They have several young players on their roster, most notably Nick Senzel.
It’s unclear if Cincinnati would be interested in trading Senzel, but the outfielder looked impressive after being called up last season. He hit .256 with 12 home runs and 42 RBI in 106 games. However, he is still considered the Reds’ top prospect, so they may be hesitant to deal him even for an impact player like Lindor.
Lindor, 26, has been a star for the Indians over the past few seasons. He’s a career .288 hitter and has averaged 34.3 home runs and 85 RBI over the last three years. Like many of their other star players, Cleveland likely knows they will not be able to give Lindor a market value contract when he hits free agency after the 2021 season.
The Reds have shown a willingness to make big trades recently, one of which was a three-team deal that landed them former Indians starting pitcher Trevor Bauer back in July.
Lindor is being heavily pursued by at least one other team, and it’s still possible the Indians hold him through the winter and explore trading him prior to the deadline next season. Either way, it seems to be only a matter of time before he’s dealt.