Reds schedule: Pitching will be front and center in battle for the Ohio Cup

CINCINNATI, OH - JULY 14: Sonny Gray #54 of the Cincinnati Reds (Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images)
CINCINNATI, OH - JULY 14: Sonny Gray #54 of the Cincinnati Reds (Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images) /
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Cincinnati Reds
CLEVELAND, OHIO – JULY 26: Francisco Lindor #12 of the Cleveland Indians (Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images) /

It’s been a slow start for the Tribe’s all-world shortstop

Before we get ahead of ourselves I don’t think anyone believes that Francisco Lindor will continue to hit .222 for the season. He’s without a doubt one of the game’s most talented players. However, time is of the essence for both Lindor and the Indians this season.

Following the 2021 season, Lindor will enter free agency. He’ll be just 27-years old when he hits the open market and there’s no doubt a contract worth hundreds of millions of dollars will be awaiting his signature. The chances of Lindor receiving that offer from his current club are slim to none.

As a result, the Tribe finds themselves in a precarious position with their four-time All-Star shortstop. Do they go all in this year behind their outstanding pitching and try to make a deep postseason run with Lindor or do they turn their sights to the future of their franchise?

It’s hard to imagine any scenario in which Lindor opens the 2021 season in Cleveland. This is setting up perfectly for a Mookie Betts like situation in which the Indians will entertain offers following the 2020 season and make the best deal possible.

The Indians have the pitching in place to beat anyone in the game, but at least one impactful bat for the outfield will be needed for them to have a legitimate opportunity to compete for a championship.

This is clearly a franchise at a crossroads with their star. Unfortunately, for Indians’ fans, this shortened 2020 campaign will likely be the final time they see Francisco Lindor playing for Cleveland.