Third baseman Juan Uribe is officially a member of the Cleveland Indians, the team confirmed on Twitter earlier today. As it was rumored to be the case last week, Uribe joins the team on a one-year, $4.5 million dollar deal that can go up to as much as $6 million with incentives. Uribe's arrival was previously delayed by an issue with his passport, but that seems to have been worked out. He will wear a No.4 jersey in Cleveland.
One benefit of Abraham Almonte receiving an 80-game suspension for PED use is that the Indians no longer have a tough 40-man roster decision to make. Players banned for substance abuse issues are placed on the restricted list, meaning they do not count against a team's 40-man roster. This is contrary to a player that, say, receives a suspension for some kind of misconduct in-game. In that scenario, the team would be left with essentially a 39-man roster.
Urbe's arrival also likely means a trip to play for the Triple-A Columbus Clippers for Giovanny Urshela, the second-year third baseman who struggled at the plate last season for the Tribe. While Uribe's defense will likely be a step down from Urshela, his offensive production should be much more consistent and enough to make up the difference.
Uribe is just one of several free agents the Tribe signed to major league deals this offseason, others include Tommy Hunter, Rajai Davis, and Mike Napoli.
And, of course, you just know they had this queued up all week: