Indians' Lindor likely to miss start of season

Cleveland Indians Francisco Lindor

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Lindor could miss the start of the season if it takes him the full nine weeks to recover. However, there is no guarantee that will be the case. With the Indians losing the services of Michael Brantley, Yan Gomes, Yonder Alonso, and Edwin Encarnacion over the offseason, so they may be even more reliant on Lindor to carry the offense in 2019.

From a certain perspective, even though a repeat of past year has been hard to foresee even if he was healthy right now, Lindor could now become a relative value in fantasy drafts and auctions.

If Lindor is unable to open the season - he's going to have to go through a fast-track version of spring training no matter when he returns - who is going to play shortstop? He played the past two seasons in Oakland. Yu Chang, one of Cleveland's top prospects figures to be first in line. Utility man Max Moroff, acquired from the Pirates in the Gonzalez deal, played six games at short previous year. Infielder Mike Freeman, who will be in camp on a minor league deal, played 58 games at shortstop in the minors for the Cubs past year. Of course, none of those three options are proven major leaguers. Ramirez could move from third to shortstop, but that's a long shot. In the short-term, he should have no problem handling the position defensively. The Indians could pursue a little extra depth on the free agent market.

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Cleveland Indians shortstop Francisco Lindor (12) looks back to the dugout after hitting a solo home run against the Baltimore Orioles during the sixth inning at Progressive Field. So, the question all spring will be surrounding whether Lindor will be ready to go when the season starts.

If there is a silver lining, the calf injury did not happen during the regular season.

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