The Athletic’s Jason Lloyd reports that the Indians and shortstop Francisco Lindor have, in Lindor’s words, “set aside” contract extension talks in order to focus on the regular season, which begins on March 26. The two sides were never really close to an agreement, unsurprisingly.
Lindor, 26, is earning $17.5 million this season and has one more year of arbitration eligibility remaining. He can become a free agent after the 2021 season.
Lindor has become the face of the Indians as well as one of baseball’s more popular stars. The four-time All-Star has won two Silver Sluggers, two Gold Gloves, as well as a Platinum Glove. Across parts of five seasons, Lindor has hit .288/.347/.493 with 130 home runs, 384 RBI, 478 runs scored, and 93 stolen bases in 3,244 plate appearances.
If the Indians don’t feel like they can successfully sign Lindor to an extension, or if they simply don’t want to, it wouldn’t be shocking to see the club shop him ahead of the July 31 trade deadline.