Guardians make good use of their savings

(Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)

If the Cleveland Guardians have taught us anything in recent years, it’s to preach patience.

They are not a big market team; and spending big bucks on free agents isn’t really how they operate.

On the contrary, they like to build from within: they have a keen sense of identifying talents and great coaches to develop them.

They create their own stars: sometimes they swap them because they can’t or don’t want to prolong them all.

However, in the long run, the system they have in place allows them to have a worthy replacement for every player.

Patience and wise management should be the Guardians’ mantra.

When they traded Francisco Lindor to the New York Mets in early 2021, everyone thought we wouldn’t see Cleveland in the playoffs for at least about five years.

They returned to the playoffs in 2022 after a one-year hiatus.

It turns out that two of the players they got for Lindor and Carlos Carrasco are young MLB stars: Amed Rosario and Andres Gimenez.

Of the two prospects they got, Isaiah Greene is showing wheels and great OBP in the low minors, and Josh Wolf remains promising even despite poor numbers in the minors.

Lindor needed a 10-year, $341 million extension ahead of this 2021 campaign.

Guardians have worked their magic by expanding players and keeping spend below that total.

“Crazy to think for the price of Francisco Lindor’s Mets contract ($341 million), the #Guardians spent almost that on the following add-ons/FAs currently on the list: $141M/7yrs: JRAM; $106.5 million/7 years: Gimenez; $33M/2 years: J. Bell; $25M/5 years: straw; $20M/5 years: class; $6 million: Zunino. $331.5 million in total,” Guardians analyst Jensen Lewis tweeted.

Jose Ramirez alone is arguably a better player than Lindor and costs a fraction of what his former teammate did.

Gimenez is already quite close to Lindor and has secured $106.5 million: less than a third.

Bell and Zunino offer basic power and ability, Straw makes the difference with the glove, and Clase is the best reliever in the American League.

Chris Antonetti has worked his magic again.

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