CLEVELAND — The Cleveland Indians were unable to move either of their top two starting pitchers, Corey Kluber and Trevor Bauer, at the 2018 Winter Meetings in Las Vegas last month, but they still appear to be trying to structure a deal around their two-time American League Cy Young Award winner.
According to Dennis Lin and Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic, the Indians are discussing a three-team deal with the San Diego Padres and Cincinnati Reds.
Reportedly, the Reds want Kluber, while the Padres, who ironically enough, selected Kluber in the fourth round of the 2007 Major League Baseball First-Year Player Draft, covet Cincinnati’s top prospect, Nick Senzel. There is no word on what the Indians have asked for in return for Kluber.
Although talks persist, “nothing is imminent” according to Lin and Rosenthal.
Earlier this offseason, the Reds, New York Yankees and Los Angeles Dodgers were among several teams who reportedly made inquiries into Kluber’s availability, but no deals ever came to fruition.
Cleveland Indians starter Corey Kluber delivers a pitch in the second inning against the Houston Astros during Game 1 of the American League Division Series at Minute Maid Park in Houston, Texas on October 5, 2018.
Kluber finished third in the voting for the 2018 American League Cy Young Award.
Kluber tallied 71 points with four second-place and 12 third-place votes, which placed him behind both Tampa Bay Rays ace Blake Snell (17 first-place votes, 169 points), a first-time AL Cy Young Award winner, and Houston Astros veteran right-hander Justin Verlander (13 first-place votes, 154 points).
In his 33 starts last season, Kluber (20-7) registered 222 strikeouts against just 34 walks, 179 hits and 69 earned runs allowed over 215.0 innings of work while anchoring a pitching staff that led the way to the Indians’ third consecutive AL Central Division Championship.
Opposing batters hit just .223 against Kluber during the 2018 season.
The AL Cy Young Award winner in both 2014 and 2017, Kluber won four games in three different months this past season, starting with an 8-1 slate through April and May. Additionally, Kluber posted a 4-1 record over his six August starts.
Cleveland Indians starting pitcher Corey Kluber delivers a throw to home plate against the Chicago White Sox at Guaranteed Rate Field in Chicago, Illinois on September 24, 2018.
An AL All-Star for the third consecutive season, Kluber posted an 8-2 record in 13 starts following the 2018 Mid-Summer Classic. Over 81.1 innings pitched, Kluber struck out 90 batters and walked only 17 while cutting down on his home runs allowed.
Along with being a Cy Young Award finalist, Kluber was named a finalist for an AL Gold Glove Award this past season after recording 19 putouts and 13 assists with a perfect 1.000 fielding percentage.
Kluber is 96-55 with a 3.09 earned run average in 201 games over eight seasons with the Indians.