If you’re active on baseball Twitter, or maybe an avid viewer of MLB Network, you’ve probably noticed that one guy seems to have all the info on a possible Corey Kluber deal: Jon Morosi.
Kluber, of course, has not been traded, and many have reported that it’s unlikely he will. But even without any real movement, Morosi is an endless fount of “news.” The latest, from Sunday, had the Indians talking with the Padres about a deal:
I’m not completely discounting Morosi’s reporting, but he has also reported details about a Kluber trade with the Reds, Dodgers, Phillies, Yankees, and Brewers. That’s, uh, a lot. Morosi is clearly the kind of writer who gets his clicks by passing on a lot of gossip, he’s no Jon Heyman, but he reports a lot more whispers than, say, Ken Rosenthal.
The question, then, is where is Morosi getting his info? Let’s get weird.
Morosi has linked the Tribe with at least 5 teams, which lends some credence to the idea that his source is the common denominator. This seems most likely and simultaneously most unlikely. Yes, the Indians might want to leak some details to spur negotiation and whatnot, but this is not how the Indians usually do business. Besides that, the Indians have the upper hand in any talks. If you don’t provide a deal worth taking, they don’t have to take it. Kluber is an ace, a two-time Cy Young winner that has finished in the top three an additional two times; he’s making $17 million next year, which is a bargain for a player of his level. If the Tribe doesn’t like your deal, they can keep Kluber and go on with the season no worse for the wear.
If another franchise, let’s say the Reds, desperately wants Kluber because they have a trash rotation (checks out for the Reds), then maybe they want to put a little public pressure on to try and get the Indians to negotiate. This seems likely! It also seems unlikely to make the Indians bend, but that just speaks to the intelligence of the Cleveland front office versus others (like the Reds), which I am biased to accept as true. This scenario, however, fails to address the breadth of Morosi’s reporting, as another team (the Reds) would not likely have a list of everyone the Indians are talking to about a deal (the Reds definitely made up the Yankees’ interest in this scenario).
All the teams
Maybe Morosi has some semi-informed contacts with each team involved and they’ve been giving him little bits of information for various reasons and he’s been extrapolating those into full-length articles of speculation and lengthy segments on MLB Network to make up for ice cold stove. This seems terribly unlikely compared with the following possibilities.
It would be hard to argue that Rosenthal is not the best connected baseball writer. The man is everywhere and knows just about everything. I’ve heard anecdotes about him sharing leads with other reporters simply because he is (1) nice and (2) has other things to follow-up on. But what if he was a little less nice than his perception? What if he needed a foil, someone peddling spurious trade information, to make him look better and wiser? What if he was texting Morosi from a plethora of burner cell phones with fake information, purporting to be mid- to upper-level MLB executives? I’m not willing to discount the possibility.
He’s been trying to break into the Illuminati’s ranks for years (see: National Treasure) and spreading these rumors is his latest gambit.
The Jerky Boys
This is an elaborate and very specific prank. A new era in prank calling.
Going back to the /u/wetbutt23 well to get info.
It remains uncertain where Morosi gets his news from, but I bet it lies somewhere in those 10 possible explanations. Actually, it’s the Illuminati. It’s always the Illuminati.
Good lord, baseball needs to start soon.