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Should the Cleveland Indians trade closer Cody Allen?

How big a return could the Tribe get for their closer?

David Richard-USA TODAY Sports

After losing eight straight games at home and virtually erasing any legitimate hope of contending for a playoff spot this year, the Indians are now clearly sellers at the trade deadline. The question is... just how big a sale will we see?

While names like Brandon Moss, Carlos Carrasco, David Murphy (already gone), and Ryan Raburn have been mentioned in numerous trade rumors, might the Indians look deeper and consider moving closer Cody Allen?

Allen is certainly one of the top closers in the American League. The 26 year old started the year off poorly, giving up eight runs over a span of four games. His ERA sat at 18.00 and there was some buzz about him losing his closer job. Since then, Allen has been mostly fantastic and currently owns a 3.57 ERA and a 2.01 FIP, and he has closed out 20 games for the Tribe.  His 14.06 K/9 is elite, and if not for a .386 BABIP against (it was .266 last year), Allen's numbers would look even better.

So why trade a dominant young closer like Allen? First off, he's one of the most valuable Indian trade pieces and even teams that have good closers are often looking for bullpen help. (For example, the Nationals just traded for Jonathan Pabelbon, despite already having Drew Storen.) I imagine a team like the Blue Jays would love to add Allen to the back end of their bullpen and might give up a combination of top prospects to land him.  Names like Daniel Norris and Aaron Sanchez have already floated around in the Carrasco rumors and could be in play for an Allen deal.

Allen's contract status is a major plus for most teams, as he's team controlled through 2018.  For the Indians however, it's not as positive, with Allen being arbitration eligible starting next year and in line to earn a sizable pay raise.  As team president Mark Shapiro recently stated:

There's what we need in a perfect environment where we can build the perfect team in any way we want and then there's realities. Every team has different thresholds. There's a budget we have to operate within.

What a fun quote for Indians fans. With payroll issues already popping up for next year, trading Allen would save the Indians millions of dollars and likely bring back top notch prospects.

There's certainly plenty of negatives to making the deal, including the obvious; replacing a top closer.  Zach McAllister has closer stuff but so far has proven too inconsistent, Bryan Shaw is much better suited for a setup role, and young guys like Austin Adams and Shawn Armstrong aren't nearly ready. Dealing Allen would also further alienate an already testy fan base.

While it seems an Allen deal is unlikely, history has shown us that plenty of surprises come along at the deadline.

What do you think... Should the Indians trade Allen?  How big a return would it take in order for you to be okay with it?