The Indians don’t expect to be able to sign Shin-Soo Choo to an extension and will listen to trade offers for him this offseason, Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com reports. GM Chris Antonetti told Heyman the Indians have attempted to sign Choo long-term “multiple times” in recent years. However, Choo and agent Scott Boras have been unreceptive to possible extension discussions, Antonetti said.
Choo, 30, is on track to hit free agency after the 2013 season. MLBTR contributor Matt Swartz recently projected a 2013 salary of $7.6MM for Choo, who will go to arbitration for the final time this coming offseason.
Antonetti pointed out that the Indians can trade Choo at next year’s trade deadline or hold onto him for the entire 2013 season if they don’t find an offer to their liking this winter. The GM suggested the Indians would make Choo a one-year qualifying offer if he’s still in Cleveland at the end of the 2013 season. Doing so would enable the Indians to collect a compensation pick in 2014. If the Indians trade Choo midway through the 2013 campaign, the acquiring team wouldn’t be able to obtain draft pick compensation the following season.
The Phillies, Pirates, Dodgers, Rangers and Reds were linked to Choo leading up to the non-waiver trade deadline last month. If Choo were available in the offseason, it wouldn’t be hard to envision teams such as the Mets and Giants expressing interest.