Cleveland wants to add a bat this winter and appears willing to part with a top tier starting pitcher in order to do so. According to Nick Cafardo of The Boston Globe, "there is no question" the Indians are going to move a pitcher in exchange for a hitter this off-season, with Carlos Carrasco and Danny Salazar expected to be made available.
After finishing the 2015 campaign at 81-80, which was good for third place in the American League Central, the Indians will likely make multiple moves to upgrade the offense. As a team, the club batted .256 while collectively getting on base at a .315 clip.
As Cafardo adds, as the year progressed, the organization appeared more open to moving Salazar. The 25-year old right-hander pitched to a 3.45 ERA and 3.62 FIP over 185.0 innings this season. He has also proven to be durable throughout the course of his career and made 30 starts in 2015.
While the Indians might be more wiling to deal Salazar, Carrasco might draw more interest. He was made available in the days leading up to the July 31 non-waiver trade deadline and had another solid season. Over 183.2 innings, Carrasco pitched to a 3.63 ERA and 2.84 FIP. He also made 30 starts and is under contract through 2018.
Cleveland expressed interest in Marlins outfielder Marcell Ozuna before the deadline, and a deal involving Ozuna and Carrasco would likely be realistic since the Marlins are seeking starting pitching.
As the off-season begins, both Salazar and Carrasco could draw a significant amount of interest since they are young and effective arms. If the Indians are as open to moving one as Cafardo believes they are, adding an additional bat or two should not be too challenging this winter.