2012 Contract Issues: Cleveland Indians

The Indians are next in our 2012 Contract Issues series.

Eligible For Free Agency (4)

  • The signings of free agents Austin Kearns, Orlando Cabrera, Chad Durbin, Adam Everett to one-year deals pretty much represent Chris Antonetti's first offseason as GM.  It's too early to say whether these veterans will have trade value or be worthy of re-signing or an arbitration offer. One thing we can say is that the 2012 Indians aren't faced with any major losses.

Contract Options (2)

  • Grady Sizemore: $9MM club option with a $500K buyout.  Sizemore's option, devised over five years ago, makes him most valuable to the Indians.  He gets a $500K assignment bonus if traded, plus it appears that his 2012 salary might increase to $9.9MM.  More importantly, the club option changes to a player one if he's dealt, so a team can't acquire Sizemore with his 2012 season in mind.  Yesterday was a promising season debut for Sizemore, and if he has a vintage year and the team stays in contention he could remain with the Tribe for 2012.
  • Fausto Carmona: $7MM club option, arbitration eligible if declined.  Though it's technically possible, I can't see the Indians declining the option and tendering Carmona a contract, since he'd make more than $7MM that way.  If he provides 200 credible innings again this will be an easy decision to pick up, and the team also has options for '13 and '14.

Arbitration Eligible (10)

A few players here will fall short of the necessary service time.  Sipp projects to be eight days short of the projected Super Two cutoff, but you never know.  Masterson, Choo, Perez, and Cabrera are the big ones here, as they'll all be much more expensive next year.

2012 Payroll Obligation

The Indians have a payroll obligation of $13MM for 2012, according to Cot's, with Travis Hafner accounting for all of it.  Under a scenario where the Indians aren't selling off pieces in July and both players are reasonably effective, we can add another $16MM for Sizemore and Carmona.  I'll estimate another $20MM for the aforementioned four big arbitration eligible names, putting the team at $49MM.  That's the exact number Cot's has for the 2011 payroll, but of course there are additional arbitration eligible players, and even those making the league minimum account for millions in total.  Though their season is not even 10% done, it'd be exciting to see the Indians contend all year and then make an offseason push for a few significant veteran reinforcements.

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5 Comments on "2012 Contract Issues: Cleveland Indians"

4 years 4 months ago


David X
4 years 4 months ago

I hope Durbin is teaching these youngsters all about being a pro and other intangibles, because he sure isn’t doing much pitching at this point.

4 years 4 months ago

throught the first couple weeks of the 2011 season Durbin has been a great teacher he has done a great job of showing these youngster exactly what NOT TO DO !!!!

The old do as I sayy not as I do.

4 years 4 months ago

Retired all 8 he’s faced tonight

4 years 4 months ago

One thing to note on Grady…while his team option does become a player option if traded, there is nothing that says the Tribe can’t pick up his option after the season, then trade him right away; therefore, the team getting him would get him for a full 2012 season.

Tribe could look to move him ala the Padres with Gonzalez this past winter. Make a run this summer, then work more on the rebuild.