Attempting to Explain How the Indians’ Payroll Helps the Chances for a Francisco Lindor Extension

Brace Hemmelgarn/Minnesota Twins/Getty Images)

Like many Cleveland Indians fans, I’ve spent the offseason attempting to find an answer to the biggest question surrounding this team.

Why are they shedding salary during the second-to-last year of Francisco Lindor’s team control?

It’s quite a conundrum. Trying to explain why the Tribe would cut payroll below $100 million while an elite talent approaches his final year of arbitration just creates nothing but more questions.

Wouldn’t you want to spend what you could to boost your chances to win before Lindor departs?

Or, why not put all that saved money towards the contract extension almost everyone assumes the Indians won’t be offering?

For what it’s worth, the Indians claimed earlier this week that they still want to keep Lindor in Cleveland long-term. However, many fans don’t buy it, especially considering the handwringing we’ve seen from the team when it comes to figuring out how to build a competitive club despite a significant portion of salary being tied to one player.

Or, if you take a deeper look at their current payroll, exactly what the Indians appear to be attempting this season.

Stick with me here. Consider this my attempt to answer the opening question by thinking outside the box.

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Casey Drottar is an Cleveland Indians writer for Sports Illustrated. Subscribe to his podcast, or follow him on Twitter and Facebook

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