The Indians are interested in keeping outfielder and would-be Game 7 hero Rajai Davis, notes MLB.com’s Jordan Bastian. President of baseball operations Chris Antonetti reiterates that the team would also like to retain slugger Mike Napoli.
“[B]oth for Raj and Mike, we expressed our desire to potentially have them back,” Antonetti says. “And we recognize they both have alternatives, based on the years that they had, but we’re certainly open to exploring different ways where both of them could be back here.”
Davis batted a modest .249/.306/.388 in the regular season after signing a one-year, $5.25MM deal last December, but he still managed to produce good value, thanks in part to his AL-leading 43 stolen bases (and only six caught stealings). He also, of course, had that memorable Game 7 homer.
“This is the best season I’ve ever had in my Major League career,” says Davis. “That would be great if we could get us both back, especially with this group of guys.”
Davis would undoubtedly still be a good complementary piece for Cleveland, particularly given his baserunning value. It will be interesting to see whether they keep him, though, given their outfield depth. Tyler Naquin, Lonnie Chisenhall and Brandon Guyer all performed well for the Indians this year and are controllable for 2017, and Guyer could potentially play center against left-handed pitching (although Cleveland used him exclusively at the corners down the stretch). The Indians also hope to have Michael Brantley healthy for next season, although his shoulder was a problem throughout the 2017 season.