SWAT's 2020 Winter Roster

Raj Mehta-USA TODAY Sports

Step 1:

Sign Corey Dickerson (LF-LHB) [2/$16 with 2022 option] +$8M to 2020 payroll.

Step 2:

Trade Nolan Jones (3B/AA), Luis Oviedo (RHP/AA), and Logan Allen (LHP/AAA) for Brian Anderson (3B/OF-RHB) and Ryne Stanek (RHRP).

Step 3:

Trade Bradley Zimmer (CF) and Sam Hentges for Ken Giles and cash ($4M). +$8M-$4M=+4M to 2020 payroll.

Step 4:

Trade Eric Haas (C/AAA), Will Benson (OF/AA), and Ernie Clement (2B/AAA) for Michael Givens (RHRP) and a low-level prospect. +$3M to 2020 payroll.

Step 5.

Sign Brandon Morrow (RHRP) to a minor league contract with some guaranteed money and incentives.

Step 6:

Sign Tyler Clippard to a 1/$2M with a 2021 vesting option for $2.5M.

Subtractions: Nolan Jones, Luis Oviedo, Logan Allen, Bradley Zimmer, Sam Hentges, Eric Haas, Will Benson, Ernie Clement, and ~$18M in 2020 and up to $16M for 2021.

Additions: Corey Dickerson (LF-LHB), Brian Anderson (3B/OF), Ryne Stanek (RHRP), Ken Giles (RHRP), Michael Givins (RHRP), Brandon Morrow (RHRP-minors), Tyler Clippard (RHRP).

That is a large list of assets to give up, and the only concerning pieces I am concerned about losing are Nolan Jones, Logan Allen, and Ernie Clement. Namely, I don’t know exactly what we give away with Jones, and giving up such good pitching depth with Allen is always a risk. But that is a risk that somebody needs to take, especially with the emergence and success of the 2016 class plus Scott Moss on the way for depth.

As for the logic of the Zimmer trade, I assume Shapiro was involved in the drafting of Zimmer, so he might see him as appealing. Adding Hentges is a hedge against Zimmer’s injury history. If Giles is healthy, he is a shutdown bullpen possibility.

I believe the Indians were interested in Givens at the trade deadline last year. Now is the time to get him. His stuff is electric. He adds to the bullpen. The package given up for him are high potential (Benson), low floor (Clement), and a catcher who needs time and room to improve his defense, but has the offensive chops to be productive in the big leagues until Rutschman arrives.

Corey Dickerson stabilizes the outfield, and he is a good bet to hit above average. Brian Anderson adds to the depth of the organization by playing the outfield too. His primary position in Cleveland will be 3B, but if Arroyo begins to emerge out of nowhere, Anderson can go to RF. Stanek, Giles, Givens, Clippard and the mere possibility of Morrow raises the bullpen’s potential. It could rival New York’s with Hand and Karinchak in the fold as well.

I understand this is an aggressive offseason in terms of the bullpen. Here is my roster.

  • SP1: Kluber

  • SP2: Clevinger

  • SP3: Beiber

  • SP4: Carrasco

  • SP5: Plutko (keeping Plutko adds to depth)

  • Bullpen: Hand, Karinchak, Stanek, Giles, Givens, Perez, Wittgren, Clippard

  • C: Roberto Perez

  • 1B: Carlos Santana

  • 2B: Jose Ramirez

  • 3B: Brian Anderson

  • SS: Francisco Lindor

  • LF: Corey Dickerson

  • CF: Oscar Mercado

  • RF: Jordan Luplow

  • DH: Franmil Reyes

  • Bench: Kevin Plawecki, Christian Arroyo, Greg Allen, Mike Freeman

There would need to be some deft managing with this roster to not lose anybody. If I had thought ahead anymore, I would have included anyone I thought I would lose in the trades to add/replace the value listed above. I think Wood falls into that category. When it comes down to Clippard vs. Wood, I am undecided. Clippard is reliable and remarkably consistent for a reliever, and Wood is young. Wood can start the year, and then trade for Givens or another good reliever at the deadline.

I think this direction makes the bullpen pretty scary, and will take a lot of pressure off of Hand. Let me know what you think, folks!

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