Cleveland Indians Desperately Want Edwin Encarnacion
December 22, 2016
The Cleveland Indians desperately want to signe MLB free agent Edwin Encarnacion.
The Indians are in desperate need of a first baseman and Edwin Encarnacion is exactly who they want.
Edwin Encarnacion has been a hot commodity and has received several possible deals in the works and has received multi-year offers from six teams, per his agent Paul Kinzer. “We’ve had multi-year offers from six different teams between three and four years, most of them in the three range,” Kinzer said. “We’ll come out of it OK.”
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 Cleveland Indians had okay production from the first base position out of Napoli, but Encarnacion would be a big upgrade.
There's still a chance Encarnacion finalizes a deal soon, even though MLB business often goes on unofficial hiatus the week between Christmas and New Year's. Kinzer said he already had spoken to a pair of teams Wednesday morning.
Risky as it might be to give a hefty deal to a player entering his mid-30s who isn't known for his athleticism, Encarnacion appears at the height of his powers. An All-Star three of the past four seasons, he has averaged 39 home runs over the last five years.
“He’s put up five years of consistent stats. Some people are acting like we’re in a panic. Are you kidding me?” Kinzer told FanRag Sports. “He’s one of the best hitters in the game.”
The reality is that Encarnacion is in his mid 30’s and in all likelihood his best years are behind him so the Toronto Blue Jays are letting him go. Someone is going to pay big money for three to four years on this contract and probably only get one or two good seasons out of him.
It’s the same thinking that has let the Toronto Blue Jays let Jose Bautista hit the free agent MLB market but who has not received the same kind of interest that Encarnacion has.