Friday, January 18, 2013
Depth or trade for Indians?
By Jason A. Churchill
The Cleveland Indians are out surveying the market for a reserve infielder, and they now have been linked to two specific names. Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com tweets Thursday that the Indians and Texas Rangers have expressed interest in free agent Ryan Theriot, and FOXSports.com's Jon Morosi reports via Twitter that Ryan Raburn is on the Tribe's radar, too.
Theriot has some experience at shortstop while Raburn is likely a second base option only -- or the outfield, perhaps -- suggesting GM Chris Antonetti and his staff aren't specifically looking for a backup shortstop. Mike Aviles could serve in that role, as could Juan Diaz.
Cord Phelps may be the club's backup plan if they are unable to fund a veteran reserve, although Aviles is a capable reserve at all three infield positions, which raises an eyebrow. Is there a potential trade coming that involves Asdrubal Cabrera, a name on the trade block most of the fall and winter? Maybe, maybe not.
At this stage of the offseason, Cleveland could simply be looking for depth and contingency plans to cover for injuries that may occur during spring training. But keep an eye on Cabrera, anyway, as clubs tend to stay aggressive during spring training.
Others that could fit as a reserve: Orlando Hudson, Adam Kennedy, Jason Bartlett, Ronny Cedeno and Alex Gonzalez.