Most of the talk around the Indians this offseason revolves around which players they will trade, from right fielder Shin-Soo Choo to shortstop Asdrubal Cabrera, right-hander Justin Masterson to closer Chris Perez.
Yet, according to major-league sources, the Indians aren’t limiting their search to improve, even while considering moves that seemingly will result in a step backward.
In fact, club officials are checking in on most of the available players in trades and free agency, even ones who seemingly will be out of their financial reach.
Case in point: Free-agent outfielder/first baseman Nick Swisher.
The Indians likely stand no chance of signing Swisher, who is drawing interest from a number of clubs and could emerge as a viable alternative for teams that fail to land the market’s biggest prize, Josh Hamilton.
Swisher, though, is from Parkersburg, WV, a city not far from the Ohio border. He attended Ohio State University. And, like most players, he holds new Indians manager Terry Francona in high regard.
Does any of that mean that the Indians will sign Swisher? Of course not. But just as teams act as buyers and sellers at the trade deadline, the Indians could function as both this off-season — and maybe even pull off a surprise.
— Ken Rosenthal