12/15 13:44 CST AP source: Indians send Kluber to Texas for DeShields, Clase
AP source: Indians send Kluber to Texas for DeShields, Clase
By TOM WITHERS
AP Sports Writer
CLEVELAND (AP) --- Corey Kluber's run as Cleveland's ace appears to be over.
He's heading home to Texas.
The Indians are close to completing a trade that will send the two-time Cy
Young Award winner to the Rangers, a person familiar with the negotiations told
The Associated Press on Sunday.
Cleveland will get outfielder Delino DeShields and pitching prospect Emmanuel
Clase for the 33-year-old Kluber.
The teams have been discussing the deal and finalizing terms, said the person
who spoke to the AP on condition of anonymity because of the sensitivity of the
talks. All that remains are physicals.
Kluber has been one of the AL's most dominant pitchers for six seasons. The
right-hander won the Cy Young in 2014 and 2017 while anchoring the Indians'
strong starting staff.
But his future with the Indians grew more uncertain last season when the club
managed to stay in the playoff chase until late September despite not having
him after May 1.
Kluber broke his right forearm when he was struck by a line drive during a
start at Miami and never made it back. He came close to returning to the
Indians' rotation but suffered an oblique injury during a minor league rehab
appearance that ended his comeback.
The Indians picked up his $17.5 million contract option for 2020 immediately
after last season. His deal includes a club option for $18 million for 2021.
A three-time All-Star, Kluber is 98-58 with a 3.16 career ERA. Before last
season, he pitched at least 203 innings in each of the previous five seasons
while recording more than 200 strikeouts in each of those seasons as well.
The Indians believe the time is right to move Kluber. Cleveland has several
young solid pitchers, including Shane Bieber and Mike Clevinger, on its staff
and can address other needs in return for Kluber.
The 27-year-old DeShields hit .249 with 24 stolen bases for Texas last season.
Clase, a 21-year-old righty, skipped the Triple-A level last season and made
his big league debut with the Rangers in August, going 2-3 with a 2.31 ERA in
mostly a relief role.
Kluber won 20 games for the Indians in 2018 and he had 18 victories in 2014,
2016, and 2017.
Texas went into this offseason wanting to bolster its rotation around returning
All-Star left-hander Mike Minor and right-hander Lance Lynn, who combined for
30 wins last season while both throwing 208 1-3 innings. The Rangers have now
added three new starters this month.
Before the deal for Kluber, who is from Coppell, Texas, about 25 miles from the
new Rangers ballpark, the team had already signed free agent right-handers
Jordan Lyles and Kyle Gibson to multiyear deals.
A $16 million, two-year deal was completed Friday with Lyles, a week after a
$28 million, three-year contract for Gibson.
The Rangers are moving next season into a new $1.2 billion stadium, being built
across the street from the ballpark they called home the past 26 seasons.
Texas went 78-84, then missed out on a pair of free-agent targets at the recent
winter meetings, watching star pitcher Gerrit Cole and slugger Anthony Rendon
sign with other teams.
Kluber would get a $1 million assignment bonus for getting traded.
Because he's being dealt, his $18 million club option for 2021 would become
guaranteed if he pitches 160 innings next year and is not on the injured list
at the end of the season.
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