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Angels interested in trade for Clevinger (sources)

@jonmorosi
January 5, 2020

With the Angels’ fourth-round pick in the 2011 Draft, they selected a right-hander from Seminole State College named Mike Clevinger. Nearly a decade later, they’d love to have him back. Sources say the Angels and Indians have discussed a trade this offseason that would send back Clevinger to his original

With the Angels’ fourth-round pick in the 2011 Draft, they selected a right-hander from Seminole State College named Mike Clevinger.

Nearly a decade later, they’d love to have him back.

Sources say the Angels and Indians have discussed a trade this offseason that would send back Clevinger to his original organization, although there has not been active dialogue in recent days.

Talks failed to gain momentum when the Indians’ initial asking price included Angels outfield prospect Jo Adell (No. 5 overall on MLB Pipeline) and an additional player, sources say.

The fact that the Indians asked for a player along with Adell suggests the price tag on Clevinger may be even higher than that of All-Star shortstop Francisco Lindor. Sources say the Indians have asked for middle infielder Gavin Lux (MLB Pipeline's No. 2 overall prospect) in their conversations with the Dodgers about Lindor.

Clevinger is eligible for free agency after the 2022 season, which means he’s controllable for one season beyond the 26-year-old Lindor. The Indians originally acquired Clevinger from the Angels in an Aug. 7, 2014, trade for reliever Vinnie Pestano.

The Angels fell short in their efforts to land a high-profile starting pitcher via free agency and have focused on trading for a starter since signing third baseman Anthony Rendon.

Clevinger, who turned 29 in December, is perhaps the best trade option among the relatively few impact starters available -- a group that includes Boston’s David Price, Colorado’s Jon Gray and Detroit’s Matthew Boyd.

Clevinger was limited to five starts before the All-Star break, due to an upper back strain and left ankle sprain. But he returned to form in the second half, with an 11-2 record and 2.30 ERA over 16 starts.

Clevinger’s 141 ERA+ ranks seventh among Major League starters who have thrown at least 500 innings over the last four seasons. (Clevinger has thrown 500 2/3 innings during that span.)

Jon Paul Morosi is a reporter for MLB.com and MLB Network.