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Indians exercise club option for Carlos Carrasco, decline option for Brandon Guyer

The offseason has begun

MLB: Cleveland Indians at Kansas City Royals Peter G. Aiken

The Cleveland Indians have exercised the 2019 club option for Carlos Carrasco and declined the option for Brandon Guyer. Carrasco’s option is worth $9.75 million, while Guyer will be owed a buyout of $250,000 for an option that would have cost $3 million.

Picking up Carrasco’s option was a no-brainer. He has been a key cog in the Indians’ rotation the last four seasons, and bringing him back preserves the entire 2018 starting rotation for 2019.

Guyer was originally acquired by the Tribe front office on Aug. 1, 2016 in a post-deadline trade with the Tampa Bay Rays, in large part because of his .336/.464/.557 against left-handed pitching. He was 6-for-18 in the postseason for the Indians that year, including a .500 on-base percentage. In the offseason after the Indians’ run to the World Series, he signed a two-year deal with the Indians, buying out his last two years of arbitration.

But his last two seasons have been a far cry from his initial stint with the Tribe. Guyer struggled at the plate and frequent stints on the DL seemed to prevent him from ever finding a rhythm. Even his extraordinary HBP numbers returned to pedestrian levels.

With Michael Brantley, Lonnie Chisenhall, Melky Cabrera, and Rajai Davis all set to become free agents, the Indians’ declining Guyer’s club option means the only outfielders under team control for next season (with big league experience) are Greg Allen, Leonys Martin, Tyler Naquin, and Bradley Zimmer. Three of them spent much of last season on the DL.