This afternoon, news broke that right-handed closer Chris Perez had been released by the Cleveland Indians while Jason Giambi re-signed to a minor league contract with an invitation to Spring Training.
Most Tribe fans knew that something had to be done with the closer situation in the bullpen. Perez posted awful numbers during his last 20 1/3 innings pitched. He gave up 7 home runs and posted a 7.52 ERA. During his four seasons in Cleveland, he pitched 267 2/3 innings and while putting up a commendable 3.33 ERA, 124 saves, and an average of 8.4 strikeouts per nine innings pitched. With his attitude towards fans & ownership, his recent run in with the law, this move isn’t surprising. The free agent market is flooded with closers, now listing Chris Perez, Joe Nathan, Brian Wilson, Fernando Rodney, Joaquin Benoit, Grant Balfour and Edward Mujica. With all that activity in the free agent pool, it may be a bit more difficult for Perez to find a team to sign with.
Also making headlines this afternoon was the fact that the Tribe re-signed 42 year old Jason Giambi to a minor league contract with an invitation to Spring Training. Giambi didn’t provide great numbers throughout the 2013 season, but will be remembered for his highlight reel of pinch hit home runs(Eicher you made a bet, now shave your head).
There are some rumors that Asdrubal Cabrera will be moved this offseason. I would disagree – with Lindor coming off a back injury and simply not being ready for primetime, we’ll see Asdrubal at least until the All-Star Break 2014 when trades are in full swing. Aviles isn’t a starting SS, he’s a great role player off the bench.