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Indians Trade For Kenny Lofton

According to Dennis Manoloff, the Indians are close to acquiring outfielder Kenny Lofton.  The Rangers will receive catcher Max Ramirez, who the Indians got for Bob Wickman last year. 

Ramirez, 22, has a nice .923 OPS in 77 High A games.  However, Baseball Prospectus's Nate Silver is skeptical.  This acquisition certainly wouldn't stop the Rangers from getting Jarrod Saltalamacchia.

It's great to see Lofton back in Cleveland, even if he won't be in center field.  He's been around forever, but still knows how to get on base and swipe 'em with a high success rate.  Probably not someone you want to start against southpaws, but he makes the perfect platoon partner for Jason Michaels.

Interestingly, Will Carroll of Baseball Prospectus reports that the Indians and Rangers didn't just discuss Lofton - Mark Teixeira's name came up as well.

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I'm being told that Ramirez wasn't in the Kinston lineup yesterday. I haven't checked this out yet.

What role does Kenny Lofton end up playing for the Indians? Will he get played fairly regularly in LF?

I think K-Lo is Jason Michaels' platoon partner, probably in LF.

does this mean that the braves offer for tex is off the table? or have they agreed to a deal with the angels? ramirez is only in high A ball, but he has some pretty sick numbers down there

Now the question is whether there's a follow-up trade to be made. The Indians were viewed as having an excess of OFs BEFORE this trade, and the bullpen was Shapiro's stated first area of concern.

I wouldn't be surprised.

I agree nickjs21, I wouldn't be surprised to see Cleveland trade Gutierrez for a top-notch reliever later today.

seems like a pretty good trade for cleveland. Their trades always seem to work out for them.

I believe that this indicates that the Braves are not going to trade Saltalamacchia. Especially since McCann got popped with Molina's backswing twice in one at bat.

I think Ben Francisco is more likely. The fact is a top-notch reliever isn't a necessity. Just a good one.

I think Shapiro has really fallen in love with Gutierrez. Meanwhile, Francisco has made an impressive debut but is already 25. Shaprio would love to flip him for someone.

Nothing would surprise me, however.

boomshwa12 -- This won't affect the Teixeira/Salty deal at all, Ramirez is a pretty bad defender behind the plate, and probably will have to be moved to first base.

good move by the tribe. Having Kenny Lofton on your team all but secures a playoff spot. It's just the way things go.

I love Shapiro. Another strong move.

But how many teams want a 25 year old Ben Francisco, AND are willing to trade a top reliever for him?

He's played okay in limited time, but he's not a legit starter in m book.

I agree, SBE. I think his perceived value among some GMs is a little higher than his actual value.

Wish the Cubs got him.

Now I'm hearing on ESPN 850 (same station that broke the Lofton deal this morning) that Cliff Lee is being sent to Buffalo. That would be interesting.

Jason Stanford or Aaron Laffey would probably take his place.

More on this if I hear it.

With Texas acquiring Ramirez that may mean they are getting ready to deal Laird. The Atlanta deal with "Salty" could very well include Laird.

Ramirez isn't close to the big leagues. And he won't be a catcher when he gets there. If Laird is going somewhere, it's not because of Ramirez.

That's true, however if Laird is traded and Saltamachia goes to Texas then they have depth in the minors.

Oh wow, I cant believe the cost of Kenny was this small! It was said just last week that Texas was asking for the Indians top pitching prospect… I loved getting Max for Wickman, but I like Wickman06 for Lofton07 and I can easily deal with this.

And yeah, he will be playing LF against Righties in a split with Michaels…


As far as Lee possibly being sent to Buffalo… humm… I guess it could work, but I would be so worried about it causing distraction ~ ie him causing a stink about it.

If Lee is being sent down, and with Kenny needing to be added to the 40Man and current 25Man a couple moves need to be made no matter what. If Lee is headed to Buffalo I would imagine it would be Sowers brought back up as he is already on the 40Man. Jeremy has seen a dramatic difference in his last two starts… To make room for Lofton they will probably release Hector Luna and send Ben Francisco down to Buff until he’s traded.

And yeah, I think Cle will now be forced to hold onto Gutierrez and instead trade BenFran off to whatever team, FrankieG can play RF where BenFran doesn’t have a strong enough arm to play adequate there. Ironically, the Indians now have 5 natural CFers in the “ML-Ready” or more category (Sizemore, Lofton, Gutierrez, Francisco, Choo)

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