Cesar Hernandez and the Cleveland Indians Agree to a Deal
The Cleveland Indians have resigned second baseman Cesar Hernandez. The deal was first reported by Daniel Álvarez Montes who covers the Venezuelan Winter Baseball League. Jon Heyman of MLB Network later confirmed the deal.
Cesar Hernandez agrees to Indians deal pending medicals
— Jon Heyman (@JonHeyman) January 26, 2021
Zack Meisel, who covers the Cleveland Indians for The Athletic, added the terms of the deal on Twitter.
Multiple sources confirm: César Hernández back to Cleveland on a one-year deal plus a club option, but medicals could take some time before it's official. @JonHeyman was on it first.
— Zack Meisel (@ZackMeisel) January 26, 2021
Hernandez signing with the Indians marks the third notable transaction for the team this offseason. To begin, Cleveland started the offseason by placing closer Brad Hand on waivers. Hand was set to earn $10 million dollars this year. The Indians had hoped that a team would claim him, but that didn’t happen. Instead, Hand agreed to a one-year, $10.5 million deal with the Washington Nationals over the weekend.
Following that move, Cleveland made the blockbuster Francisco Lindor and Carlos Carrasco trade with the New York Mets. Both were viewed as trade candidates when the offseason started due to the amount of money each would make this coming season.
Now, the Indians have brought back a familiar name in Cesar Hernandez. Hernandez signed a one-year deal with the team last offseason and made $6.25 million in 2020.
Recap of Cesar Hernandez 2020 Season
During his age 30 season, Hernandez was used primarily in the leadoff spot. Over 197 plate appearances or 43 games leading off, he hit .257/.333/.377. In that span, he recorded 45 hits, 15 doubles, two home runs, 13 RBI, 19 walks, and 44 strikeouts. In addition, the Indians did bat Hernandez in the two hole in 14 games.
While the power was lackluster overall, Hernandez does give the Cleveland Indians a table setter at the top of the lineup. Overall, the Indians ranked in the bottom third in the leadoff spot from a OPS perspective in 2020 with a value of .688.
Furthermore, he helps to solidify the makeup of the infield. As it stands right now, Cleveland does not have a first baseman. Although, they have recently acquired Amed Rosario penciled in at shortstop and former All-Star Jose Ramirez at third base. With Hernandez in the fold, Ramirez can continue to stay at the hot corner unless matchups say otherwise.
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