Oakland A’s rumors: Trying to find a package for Mike Clevinger
By David Hill
The Cleveland Indians may look to deal Mike Clevinger. If this happens, the Oakland A’s have the pieces to take a run at his services.
Mike Clevinger has made himself persona non grata with the Cleveland Indians. He had violated the league’s COVID-19 protocols along with Zach Plesac, but did not admit to his part, traveling on the team flight following their game on Sunday. Considering that the Indians have players and coaches in the high risk category, that decision certainly did not earn any respect from the rest of the team.
It is questionable as to whether or not that respect will ever return. Several players, including Oliver Perez, threatened to opt-out if Clevinger and Plesac returned to the active roster following their quarantine, leading to the duo being sent to the alternate training site.
There is a chance that Clevinger is traded. His transgressions are considered to be worse than Plesac’s, as he did not get on that team flight and lie about going out. The problem for the Indians would be getting proper value for a pitcher who essentially needs to be removed from the roster due to a toxic situation of his creation.
Enter the Oakland A’s. While the farm system is not at the same level it was at the start of the season, there are plenty of intriguing pieces that could be moved for a top of the rotation start such as Clevinger. And some of those pieces fit specific needs that the Indians have, both this year and moving forward.
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The Indians have needs in the outfield, and would likely want a young arm back as part of a package. There is also the concern that Francisco Lindor will depart in free agency after the season. Daulton Jefferies has been mentioned as a possible trade chip, and could fit that need for a young, close to major league ready arm. Sheldon Neuse may not be Lindor, but he is a serviceable middle infielder that, at worst, could be a utility option in Cleveland. One of Austin Beck, Greg Deichmann, and Luis Barerra could be interesting pieces in a deal, as each player has specific tools that intrigue, but plenty of question marks.
Changes are, it would take more than the players listed, although that could be the foundation for a trade deal. This may also be the perfect time to get Clevinger, as his trade value may never be lower. The Indians, who are looking to contend while rebuilding, are in a difficult situation when it comes to his future with the team.
If the Cleveland Indians are looking to trade Mike Clevinger, the Oakland A’s should pick up the phone. The A’s might have the pieces needed to make a deal.