The Indians have made a habit of signing young stars to extensions, and it isn’t any surprise that the team has apparently been in talks with shortstop Francisco Lindor. The specific nature of the talks may have been revealed by a unique source — Brody Chernoff, the six-year-old son of Tribe GM Mike Chernoff (as per the Associated Press). Young Brody sat in with radio broadcaster Tom Hamilton during today’s game and, when asked what deals his dad was working on, replied “he’s trying to get Lindor to play for seven more years.” (audio link) A seven-year extension would cover Lindor’s two remaining pre-arb years, his three arbitration years and his first two free agent seasons. This is assuming that the proposed extension would begin for the coming season and overwrite Lindor’s current minimum salary, though we’ll have to wait for Brody’s next report for more details.
Here’s more from around the AL Central…
- White Sox center fielder Charlie Tilson told reporters (including Colleen Kane of the Chicago Tribune) that he will be forced to continue wearing a walking boot for a few more weeks. Tilson suffered a stress reaction in his right foot last month, and between his continued recovery time and his preseason training, it might be late May before Tilson reaches the majors. Sox manager Rick Renteria said that the team is still deciding between Peter Bourjos, Jacob May, and Leury Garcia to handle the center field job in Tilson’s absence.
- Yoan Moncada will begin the season in Triple-A, and Fangraphs’ Craig Edwards argues that the White Sox should keep the star prospect in the minors until at least mid-May for both baseball reasons (Moncada has never played at the Triple-A level) and for service time reasons. Moncada acquired his first 31 days of MLB service time last season with the Red Sox, so an extended stint in the minors would help Chicago gain an extra year of control over Moncada’s services. In fact, the White Sox could even delay Moncada’s promotion until after the All-Star break to prevent him from getting Super Two status. While this system may not be the fairest for a player, Edwards writes, this extra control is more valuable to the franchise than any early reps Moncada might get playing for the big league club in April.
- Twins chief baseball officer Derek Falvey is profiled by Tyler Kepner of the New York Times, who details Falvey’s rise from scouting prospects in the Cape Cod League to running Minnesota’s baseball operations department. A former college pitcher himself, Falvey’s biggest priority is to upgrade the Twins’ pitching philosophy after years of subpar results from their arms. “There’s an organizationwide desire to shed that label, the pitch-to-contact term,” Falvey said. “So there’s a lot of energy around embracing some new programs to make sure we are talking about velocity development and how we get strikeouts and some elements to finish pitches. I think it’s the right fit now, because the organization is open to that conversation.”
- In an effort to potentially cut down on injuries and player fatigue, the Twins have been monitoring the cumulative total of their players’ baseball-related activities, Mike Berardino of the St. Paul Pioneer Press writes. Everything from time in the batting cage to workouts to actual on-field playing time is charted under this system. For another angle, Berardino’s piece features some interesting quotes from MLBPA head Tony Clark about how the players’ union has some concerns about how such information is being collected and how it could be used by teams.