Cleveland Indians Add Edwin Encarnacion

Cleveland Indians Add Edwin Encarnacion

Edwin Encarnacion, most recently of the Blue Jays, has agreed on a three year contract with the Cleveland Indians with $60-65 million in guaranteed money. Across a 162 game season, he averages 33 homers, 101 RBIs and a.266 batting average. They had speed, versatile players, and a solid pitching staff.

During the All-Star break last season, the Indians made arguably the biggest trade of the season by acquiring 6-foot-7 left-handed reliever Andrew Miller from the New York Yankees, a move that helped the team make it as far as Game 7 of the World Series. The Indians steamrolled through the American League playoffs last season and almost did the same in the World Series before blowing a three games to one lead against the Chicago Cubs.

Encarnacion, who will turn 34 in January, launched 42 for the Blue Jays in 2016, tying a career high. It has been postulated that he made a mistake not just re-signing with the Toronto Blue Jays and that his contract demands were just too much for teams to meet. Since joining the Blue Jays, he has hit.268 with 239 home runs in eight seasons.

The Cleveland Indians got their man, reaching a three-year agreement with free agent Edwin Encarnacion. In Encarnacion, however, they are not trying to build a core through free agency; they're complementing a team that is positioned to control the AL Central, and perhaps the American League, for the next several years. If the deal is sealed, it will be the largest in free-agent signing in Indians history, surpassing the four-year, $56 million contract Nick Swisher received in December of 2012.

Sure, the Indians had the potent offensive combination of Francisco Lindor, Jason Kipnis and Jose Ramirez, but none of them had an offensive game that was built around mashing the ball to the moon. Encarnacion will definitely boost the Indians' roster which lacked firepower in the post-season with the fewest homers during the playoffs last season. They'll have Danny Salazar, Carlos Carrasco and Trevor Bauer back next season, which good health permitting is as good a rotation as you'll find. He is only a part-time first baseman who eventually will be a full-time DH.

Don't expect those three to do better, though.

The Indians failed to close out on the Cubs, but all in all they still had one of their best campaigns in recent years.

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