The defending American League champion Indians are reportedly “pulling out all the stops” for free agent 1B/DH Edwin Encarnacion, according to Jon Heyman of FanRag Sports.
The Indians have been in pursuit of a free agent first baseman, having also been linked to Mike Napoli, Mark Trumbo, Chris Carter, and Adam Lind. Meanwhile, Encarnacion has reportedly received multi-year offers from six teams, per his agent Paul Kinzer.
Encarnacion, who turns 34 years old next month, had a terrific 2016 season, batting .263/.357/.529 with 42 home runs and 127 RBI in 702 plate appearances. The Indians got decent production from the first base position out of Napoli, but Encarnacion would be a big upgrade.
Jon Heyman reports that the Cardinals and free agent catcher Matt Wieters have agreed on a one-year, $2 million deal. Wieters can earn an additional $1 million through incentives.
Wieters, 33, spent last season with the Cardinals as Yadier Molina‘s backup. In 67 games, the veteran hit .214/.268/.435 with 11 home runs and 27 RBI. While Wieters has left something to be desired offensively in recent years, he still plays solid defense behind the plate.
Wieters will once again serve as the backup to Molina. Catching prospect Andrew Knizner is expected to start the season at Triple-A Memphis.