Brett Myers and the Indians officially announced their one-year, $7 million deal today and it was also revealed that the team option for 2014 is worth $8 million.
So if Myers pitches well and stays healthy he’ll get $15 million for two seasons, which would be the same contract that free agent starters like Joe Blanton and Brandon McCarthy received. Except, of course, that if he pitches poorly or gets hurt the Indians are only on the hook for half of that.
Myers’ off-field history would probably make any team think twice about adding him, but purely in terms of his on-field value the Indians got themselves a very nice deal in a seller’s market for pitching.
The White Sox have reportedly picked up first baseman Yonder Alonso from the Indians, according to Stadium. The return for Alonso is expected to be nothing more flashy than a “fringe prospect,” though the minutiae of the deal is still pending a formal announcement from both teams.
Alonso, 31, inked a two-year deal with the Indians during the 2017 offseason. His first campaign with the club yielded a modest .250/.317/.421 batting line, 23 home runs, .738 OPS and 0.7 fWAR in 574 PA. The real boon for the White Sox may not be a passable veteran bat, however, but something more intangible — like Alonso’s clout with his brother-in-law and highly-coveted free agent slugger, Manny Machado.
While Alonso’s 2018 output represented a significant decline from the career-best numbers he posted in 2017, he’s still a solid contributor at the plate and, more importantly, slated to remain under team control for the next two years with just $8 million owed in 2019 and a $9 million option in 2020. As MLB.com’s Anthony Castrovince notes, the $17 million the Indians just erased from their payroll should give them enough room to accommodate the contracts for right-handers Trevor Bauer and Corey Kluber — a bonus regardless of what they happen to get in the trade.