Corey Kluber will be 35 years old for the majority of the 2021 season and made just one start in 2020 because of a shoulder injury, but teams are reportedly “moving quickly” in an effort to sign him.
On Thursday, ESPN’s Buster Olney reported the right-hander will “likely” sign a contract over the weekend following a successful throwing session he put on for scouts on Wednesday.
It wasn’t long ago that Kluber was one of the best pitchers in the league.
The three-time All-Star won the American League Cy Young in 2014 and again in 2017 while pitching for Cleveland. In fact, he finished in the top 10 of AL Cy Young voting five straight years from 2014 through 2018.
However, durability has become a major concern of late.
He pitched just seven games in 2019 while posting a 5.80 ERA, which was a far cry from his prime as the anchor of Cleveland’s staff. Then he lasted just one inning in 2020 while attempting to rediscover his form on the Texas Rangers.
It still isn’t particularly surprising that teams are looking to quickly sign him.
After all, he figures to be a low-risk, high-reward addition for whichever team inks him to a deal and won’t have the pressure of carrying the staff like he did in Cleveland. If he is even somewhat close to what he was just a handful of years ago, he could be a massive difference-maker at the back end of a rotation.
That upside alone makes him worth a flier.